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Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2003 15:32:53 -0700 (PDT)
From: Jeff Prucher 
Subject: Re: (urth) never the Twain shall meet Lafferty nor Davies

Mantis writes: 
> Before that I read fiction by Robertson Davies for the first time, his
> novel FIFTH BUSINESS.  Many years ago, in another country, I'd lent a
> friend a copy of PEACE and after he read it he said it reminded him of
> FIFTH BUSINESS.  And there is a certain amount of congruence: if we factor
> out the SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE aspects of PEACE, the similarities are even
> more clear.  The village life; the childhood rivalries; the historical
> events of early 20th century; seductive circus women; mysterious magic.  It
> is almost as if PEACE is a case where the hero never leaves the village, as
> opposed to FIFTH BUSINESS where the hero leaves but is still bound in
> strange ways.

This reminds me of another Davies-Wolfe confluence that I don't think has been
mentioned here.  In WHAT'S BRED IN THE BONE (I'm pretty sure I have the right
title: I'm thinking of the middle book of the Cornish Trilogy), Davies invokes
an angel named the Lesser Tzadkiel, who is the angel in charge of biography.
The Lesser Tzadkiel has the ability to record all the events of a person's life
(the book, if I recall correctly, consists largely of the angel playing back
the entirety of one man's life), which is what Severian's memory does.  It's
probably no more than a coincidence, but it always struck me as being
appropriate that Severian should be associated with the angel of biography.


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