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Book Title: The Proselytizer|
The author of the book: D. Keith Mano
ISBN 13: 9780394466583
Date of issue: January 1st 1972
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 593 KB
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Reader ratings: 7.9
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Kris Lane earns an annual salary in six figures for taping commercial voice-overs (the word "itches" alone brings him in a small fortune), but Christianity is his true calling. Extreme composure and a seductive, soothing manner belie the fanatically perverse sensibility that has driven him to extraordinary testimonials to his God: the building of a giant, illuminated cross to dominate the landscape (replete with an Ampex tape deck booming out a Bach toccata); and, most important, the seduction of a select group of women into giving their souls to God, their voices to the Church choir, and their bodies to him. (He records their religious - and sexual - behavior on index cards and film before packing them off to Brazil to do missionary work among the lepers.)
The Proselytizer generates its special strength and momentum through the author's brilliant juxtaposition of the protagonist's grotesque fanaticism with the lives of his more-or-less life-sized friends and neighbors in the town of New Faith - the ineffectual, perpetually impoverished David Smith, hopelessly faithful to his disapproving, perpetually pregnant wife Edna, and the middling-aged Lambert McKee, minister of the Church of Resurrection (originally designed to be a Primate House for the Municipal Zoo), and his pretty, young, not-very-Christian wife Chloe, whose conversion Kris takes special pains to undertake...
It begins like this:
"He waited over her. It was a full push-up. she heard the tension thrill of his toe and finger joints in the mattress springing. With hisses, some exact hydraulic stamp, his torso dipped. Toneless stomach and bosom received an intaglio of his rib cage, of the silver cross there. She breathed out. Rinds of her flat, long breasts were extruded under their armpits, excess mortar between bricks to be struck smooth by a trowel. He islanded himself on her; legs corresponded to legs at instep and knee and thigh. He lay inert. This impress of his whole weight was a ceremony. It was his dominance; gravity became sensual. His left fist, in its black leather glove, squatted on her shoulder's dome. Hesitant she asked,
"Ohhhh, Daddy. Daddy? " Hinting. "Daddy? Are you my daddy?"
"Yes," he said. " I am your father." But the rich voice mentioned, too, a tiredness. His eyes - one dark brown; one closed by the black eye patch - became both blind, scanning inward landscapes now.
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Read information about the authorD. (David) Keith Mano graduated summa cum laude from Columbia University in 1963. He spent the next year as a Kellett Fellow in English at Clare College, Cambridge, and toured as an actor with the Marlowe Society of England. He came back to America in 1964 as a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at Columbia. He has appeared in several off-Broadway productions and toured with the National Shakespeare Company. Mano married Jo Margaret McArthur on 3 August 1964, and they had two children before their divorce in 1979. Mano left the Episcopal church for the Eastern Orthodox in 1979. He lived, until his death in September 2016, in Manhattan with his second wife, actress Laurie Kennedy.
Mano's nine novels emphasize religious and ethical themes and focus on contemporary issues seen from the point of view of a conservative Episcopalian. The novels are rich with comic action and written in an energetic style that occasionally caves in on itself from too much straining for effect.
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