Sunday, January 3, 2016

A young author with an old soul - review of Rachel Demeter's "Finding Gabriel"

A few months ago I had the privilege of interviewing Rachel L. Demeter for my blog. I felt a kindred spirit right away. This angel-faced Californian who is still in her twenties has an old soul that understands torment and can write convincingly about it. After reading a few reviews for Finding Gabriel, I had high hopes, and the novel exceeded my expectations in so many ways. I applaud the author for taking risky chances and the publisher for keeping the integrity of the manuscript, with so many publishers slapping an age minimum on sexually active characters in the name of political correctness. 

My instant reaction was: "Wow, I've met these characters before ... Once upon a delicious nightmare." Gabriel and Ariah have always lived in my soul, in the depths of my imagination. The author taps into the darkest erotic archetypes that live in our collective psyche. You can sense the solid foundation of French and English Romanticism - Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas, Gaston Leroux, the Bronte sisters. Those authors used body horror sparingly and skillfully as a literary tool to create certain visual and emotional contrasts.

You can tell that her robust talent bursts beyond the constraints of the romance genre. I have to say, the  most powerful, poignant and memorable passages in the novel do not involve lovemaking. Although the romantic component was convincingly executed, it was the scenes of battle, violence and public mayhem that really sent shivers down my spine. I hope that the young author continues to expand her repertoire in the direction of horror, Dystopia and literary realism.

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