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Lancelot: A Novel Paperback – September 4, 1999
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"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
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“A funny and scarifying jeremiad . . . Easy to read and hard to forget.” ―Time
“Eloquent, reckless, hilarious . . . plunges forward through tawdry bedroom mysteries toward a final grand puzzle.” ―Washington Post Book World
From the Publisher
"A modern knight-errant on a quest after evil.... Convincing and chilling." -The New York Times Book Review
"Eloquent, reckless, accurate, hilarious...plunges forward through tawdry bedroom mysteries toward a final grand puzzle." -Washington Post Book World
"A fine novel...Percy is a seductive writer attentive to sensuous detail, and such a skillful architect of fiction that the very discursiveness of his story informs it with energy and tension." -Newsweek
"A funny and scarifying jeremiad on the modern age. Lancelot is easy to read and hard to forget." -Time
Top customer reviews
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It is a story of a man, Lance, with an ambitious wife who moves from one relationship to another to achieve her goals. He allows himself to be used and marginalized into a pathetic routine of a role as the master of an old southern mansion, while his wife carves out a new career as a movie actress using the mansion as the setting for one of her films. He is jolted out of his half-drunken stupor when he discovers by accident that his seven year old daughter is not his, but was fathered by his wife's movie director. At that time of discovery, he does begin his careful planning of a way to resolve his messy predicament that results in the destruction of the mansion and the deaths of a number of his antagonists.
The story is actually told in flashback from Lance' s cell, using a real or imaginary alter ego, Percival (Percy?), who seems to play the role of a conscience. There is some question at the end of the story as to whether Lance's life will resume in a happy new chapter. This reader hopes that it will.
I don't think I could take a constant diet of Walker Percy but it is certainly a good change of pace from mysteries and historical fiction.