Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Antonello's Lion by Steve Katz

Antonello's Lion

by Steve Katz

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations
611,268,033 (4)None



Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

Not quite 4 stars, but I rounded up out of a New Year's spirit of generosity. Marked down due to some typos & stylistic tics (e.g.,using himself and themselves in place of him and them), as well as some hard-to-believe plot developments(unbelievable in terms of a novel that deliberately blurs the genres of Gothic, fantasy, science-fiction, historical, mystery, philosophical & psychological fiction). The book's tiny but thick format makes it a bit hard to hold but also accelerates the reading process, so that 582 pages speed by like 300. According to a book jacket blurb, Antonello's Lion is about "the failure of Humanism in the West." Hmmm. It's also about failed fathers or failed fathering, which perhaps amounts to the same thing. The novel encompasses two parallel narratives, two quests: the first takes place in 1962-64 and involves Solomon Briggs, his obsession with the paintings of Antonello da Messina & his search for an imagined "lost" portrait of St. Francis, which will provide proof once and for all of both the painter's genius & Solomon's own belief that da Messina's paintings show the way to a secular spirituality. Solomon leaves his newly-pregnant lover, the obsessed-with-red painter Isabel, in Venice to travel to Sicily & the southern tip of Italy on what turns into an improbable journey with a macabre ending. Almost forty years later, in 2001, Solomon & Isabel's son Nathan decides, while in Venice with his fiancee Miriam, to confront his mother (now the militant feminist performance artist Brightwatch) in order to glean whatever clues he can about his father's pre-natal disappearance. Nathan then sets off on a quest to find this lost father that mirrors Solomon's journey several decades earlier. The son follows in the father's footsteps, both literally & figuratively. Nathan's narrative has its own weird fantasy/ Sci-Fi touches: e.g., his friends Max & Holly with their virtual-reality kingdom in Colorado, their residence/ motel built in the style of a Travelodge, which features Max's most recent product development: "dildonics." Near the end, Nathan's quasi-icky attraction to Max & Holly's 10-year-old daughter Tanya almost threw a wrench in the works for me, but I decided to let it pass, as the novel doesn't quite go THERE. Katz doesn't try to make his characters either believable or empathetic. When he writes, "Nathan couldn't deal with his vulnerability to the pssst," he might just as well be describing his own authorial vulnerability to his characters' flaws & sometimes downright awfulness. ( )
  Paulagraph | May 25, 2014 |
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
First words
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

No library descriptions found.

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
1 wanted1 pay

Popular covers


Average: (4)
4 1

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 120,848,284 books! | Top bar: Always visible