Wednesday, 11 May 2016

The Countenance Divine.

Just read this amazing book by first time author and Northern Irish Keady man Michael Hughes. It is a startling and very entertaining tale of a story arc stretching back four hundred years and reaching a disturbing climax on the cusp of the millennium. Three compelling characters, not for all the right reasons, find their mutual destinies fall into congruity as biblical prophecy edges to revelation. The poet John Milton, the poet, writer, painter and visionary William Blake and the man without a face himself/herself? Jack the Ripper find the threads of their lives woven together. in a thread which winds towards the year 2.000. 1666, 1777 , 1888 and 1999, four auspicious years separated by more than just time.
             Michael Hughes has concocted a heady brew for those whose taste leans towards the arcane. It is an enigmatic tale of visionaries and blasphemous themes, part Satanic Verses part Hawksmoor.
             It gripped me well into the night. almost a one sitting read if one does not count the dreaming time before work and weary eyes. Almost started reading it again as I finished it. Found all the characters involved so engaging I wanted to meet them again almost immediately.
             Sad and haunting and a strong debut.