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The Lion of Boaz-Jachin and Jachin-Boaz (1973)

by Russell Hoban

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Rather baffling. Hoban seems to write each book in a different genre, and here he does symbolic not-quite-magic realism in a form which falls somewhere between Eastern Europe and the Latin America of Marquez or Borges. I couldn't get a grip on it.
MB 26-iii-2011 ( )
  MyopicBookworm | Mar 26, 2011 |
See What I Have Been Reading, July 2010 at From Word to Word
  jeremylukehill | Aug 3, 2010 |
The Lion of Boaz-Jachin and Jachin Boaz by Russell Hoban

The book jacket of my edition (Jonathan Cape 1973) states this is Hoban’s “First adult novel.” Fans of “The Mouse and His Child” may dispute that. I have always called Mouse “A book for children and intelligent adults.” But let’s not split hairs.

Like “Mouse” this book requires intelligent adults. Hoban set the bar very high by naming father and son with mirror names. Although I have read it many times I still must stay alert ( p.147 actually used wrong name!) Each rereading, however, increases my appreciation of its beauty.

Rather than try to give a synopsis I urge adventurous readers to find the book, and follow the trail(s) that lead to London’s embankment where a constable, a young woman, a telephone booth, a father and son AND a lion (?) collide. ( )
1 vote Esta1923 | Jan 19, 2010 |
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Epigraph
Thou huntest me as a fierce lion:
and again thou shewest thyself
marvellous upon me.

     Job  x: 16
Dedication
To Gundel
First words
There were no lion any more.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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The map-maker lives in a time when lions are extinct. He makes a map for his son to find everything he could ever want, but suddenly deserts his family to look for a lion. His son, pursuing him, finds a great deal more than just his father. The author also wrote "Turtle Diary" and "Pilgerman". 
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