Salon recommends

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Salon Staff
August 14, 2000 12:16PM (UTC)

Salon Books editors recommend

The Book of Revelation by Rupert Thomson
It's hard to know which half of English novelist Rupert Thomson's "The Book of Revelation" is more unsettling, the first or the last. In the first half, the narrator, a dancer living in Amsterdam, is kidnapped by a group of mysterious women who use him as their sex slave, playing out various scenarios of degradation and menacing eroticism. In the second half, the man is freed and becomes obsessed with finding his captors -- the tragedy is that he's lost his capacity, but not his taste, for intimacy. Disturbing and shudderingly beautiful, "The Book of Revelation" assesses the meaning and value of tenderness, from the point of view of a man who may have been robbed of it forever.

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-- Stephanie Zacharek

After Life by Rhian Ellis
On a tip from a Salon reader, I picked up this quirky suspense novel about a young woman who lives in a small upstate New York town founded and inhabited by spiritualists. Herself a medium, Naomi often finds the line between the fraudulent and the authentic very hard to draw, especially given a dire secret she's been keeping for 10 years. But what's really winning about this unusual book is the way it melds thriller elements with the kind of rueful, smart, outsider perspective of literary novels like Elizabeth McCracken's "The Giant's House" and Myla Goldberg's "Bee Season." This is a page-turner with soul.

-- Laura Miller

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