Go to Homepage   Katherine Kurtz: Saint Patrick's Gargoyle

 

Crescent Blues Book ViewsImage:three and a half moon gifAce Books ISBN 0-441-00725-2
Did you know that gargoyles really serve as God's the latter-day avenging angels? And they take the job of caring for their respective churches very seriously. So when the gargoyle from Saint Patrick's returns from his monthly meeting with the other gargoyles of Dublin to discover his pastor mugged and the silver alms bowls missing he, not surprisingly, decides to take decisive action.

Book: Katherine Kurtz, St Patrick's GargoyleUnfortunately, dawn fast approaches and gargoyles must be cautious of allowing a human to see them, mostly because of the heavenly rule that anyone who sees the true form of a gargoyle must die. (Seeing gargoyles move around town smacks of bad form too.)

The gargoyle (Paddy for short) who protects St. Patrick's Church enlists the aid of an elderly retired Knight of Malta, Francis Templeton, largely because Templeton's vintage Rolls Royce rejoices in a spiffy silver gargoyle hood ornament. Paddy really likes that little gargoyle.

While convincing Templeton to aid him, Paddy uses his "abilities" to bring the silver gargoyle to life -- and accidentally reveals his true form. Lying in the back of the Rolls while covered in a blanket, Paddy uses the little gargoyle's eyes to see while Templeton drives them around Dublin in search for the thieves.

Surprisingly Paddy and Templeton build up a friendship of sorts and solve the crime. Yet more deadly things slither about in Dublin, evil beyond the ken of normal man. Dublin's gargoyles receive instructions from above to find a knight to help them fight the incoming evil. Paddy, reluctantly and after making a deal with Death, offers to entreat for Templeton's aid.

Book: Katherine Kurtz, The AdeptTempleton, a true warrior for good and not adverse to staying alive even if only one more day, finds himself tumbling headlong into a night of secrecy, excitement, and a confrontation with an evil that not even a gargoyle as long-lived as Paddy could anticipate.

Saint Patrick's Gargoyle begins a little slowly but eventually pulls the reader in and weaves Kurtz's magic to a wonderful bittersweet ending. Albeit somewhat larger than life and less than historically accurate, the tale of Paddy and Templeton lingers in the heart long after the book has been read and set aside.

Stephen Smith

Click here to share your views.