The Ascent of Isaac Steward by Mike French

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Synopsis

The Ascent of Isaac Steward is the remarkable and extraordinary debut novel from the senior editor of the prestigious literary magazine, The View From Here. Written with a literary, lyrical voice, the book follows Isaac Steward in an emotional and original tale as he struggles to deal with the resurfacing of a suppressed memory of a car crash a year ago which killed his wife, Rebekah, his son, Esau, and left his other son, Jacob, in a coma. Isaac becomes increasingly dysfunctional and delusional as the story unfolds in a hypnotic and startling way bringing into play childhood memories of a Punch and Judy show and the revelation from his half-brother, Ishmael, that in order to be reunited with Rebekah he must be brought to a tree from his father's wood called The Dandelion Tree. To help him, Isaac slips in and out of being Major Tom Donaldson, an SAS commander fashioned by his mind to help him regress back to a time of naiveté and happiness before the accident. But Donaldson brings only death and violence and Isaac struggles to keep a grip on reality as he descends into his mind and starts to question if he himself has already died. Atmospheric and sensual and dealing with universal desires of love and reconciliation, The Ascent of Isaac Steward is reminiscent of the surrealist literary experiments of James Joyce but highly readable. Readers will be astounded, transfixed and immersed in the world long after turning the last page.
 

About Mike French

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Published April 19, 2013 by Elsewhen Press. 231 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Ascent of Isaac Steward

Publishers Weekly

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After a car crash leaves the protagonist, Isaac, bereft of his wife, Rebekah, and sons Jacob and Esau, French's debut confronts a classic problem: how to render an unreliable narrator and his "[d]ark nightmares of the mind" in ways that: clearly delineate shifts between lucidity and delusion with...

Aug 22 2011 | Read Full Review of The Ascent of Isaac Steward

The Bookbag

Maybe Pages: 218 Date: June 2011 Publisher: Cauliay Books External links: Author's website ISBN: 978-0956881014 I like to read the blurb after I've read the book.

Sep 21 2011 | Read Full Review of The Ascent of Isaac Steward

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