I read this book in two sittings. My first thoughts were God! I wish I felt as passionate about anything as Michael does about his art....'Fingers,hand, pencil even thought are one...as the glow burns...explodes like a shock of water'. The whole time I was thinking this is how a writer feels, an artist feels..For me he became a man obsessed with his need to understand and to try to express the dichotomy existing within him. To understand how to make sense of existing in an alien external world full of darkness and acute, cutting edges so at odds with his gentler sensuous vulnerable interior life. Jack, the urbane, the sophisticated, symbolised all he aspired to. As I read on I felt this was the nub of the real tragedy, a man torn between two such potent desires and that there wasn't going to be an easy answer .But I was totally unprepared for the final part. This novel reaches the height of true tragedy. I couldn't bear Michael to destroy the man he loved, the gentle, the sensuous, loving part of himself. I found it more grievous to bear than anything I've ever read, at least Othello was torn by motives of jealousy. But the final pages of ADM revealed the horrific dilemma of a young man programmed by his abusive background and in the last resort unable to escape it. I wept for Michael, I wept for the pity of it all. This is a far greater book than the much acclaimed 'Line of Beauty' which lacks the driving energy of your theme. It just has to do well.
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