The Quest by Nelson DeMille, based on an earlier novel? Maybe the tag line should read, “Expanded with the director’s cut included!” Or, “Expanded and enlarged!”
After I bought a copy, then checked it out of the digital library, I noticed a number of unflattering reviews on Amazon, alluding to the novel’s original, repurposed origin.
I’m not stranger to repurposed material. I referenced that before, in the way Amazon let me know its search “bots” were hard at work, vetting my written word as sacrosanct, and totally, wholly mine.
“Rome is Rome,” implied, about the Vatican and the mother church.
The memory, excavated to be excised, is of an Eastern Orthodox Church, slinging of incense and gold-leaf icons with halos. Heavy incense, and dark robes. It was in the Texas Hill Country, and on that visit, I had to — summer time — I had shorts and sleeveless T. Sandals. From a box of ragged clothing, I fished out a shirt and long pantaloons, wore then for the service. My date at the time had to put a doily on her head, out of respect.
I recall standing through the service, not that it mattered, but as I recall, women were required to stand, always.
So a scene from the book triggered that memory.
Myth and mythology, the story I recall, up to his death, Faulkner was working on rewriting his award-winning masterpiece, The Sound and the Fury, with a variety of cue. Color to denote various narrative speakers, different type to help explain the various interior landscapes, and who is seeing what.
As a fiction about fiction, we all have tales we’ve told that we would like to reframe. According to the end piece, that’s what “The Quest” is. That freshman novel, reworked, with more (graphic) sex. Good? Bad? With a shelf full of more mature material from the same author, I’m glad I read it, but no, I don’t find it a remarkable novel. The story about the story was more interesting to me.
“What else do monks have to do all day?”
Pray and drink, (page 344).