“She threw Trompe l’Oeil against the wall when she’d finished.” The confession came from a friend whose daughter had read my novel for a book club. Her mother wanted to know if I had any consoling words.
My first reaction was to be delighted that the daughter had read the book to the end. My second was to be glad it had evoked such a strong emotion.
As I wrote of Graham Greene’s work recently: When a writer takes me to places I would rather not go, when he opens my eyes though I would prefer to keep them shut, when the power of his words clang against my heart as if my heart was an anvil, then I know I am in the presence of a classic. (Blog 7/2/13)
I don’t propose that Trompe l’Oeil is a classic but it does strive to be literature. It does attempt to take the reader where the reader may not chose to go and broaden his or her horizons even if those horizons are the shadows of my mind.
No doubt I am foolish to admit I wrote a book that I knew would be disturbing; that I tricked the reader into thinking he or she was in for one type of adventure only to discover another. Did I cheat? No. Throughout the plot’s twists and turns clues are sprinkled like bread crumbs. There are no loose ends. But as in life, answers beget more questions. The ending to Trompe l’Oeil certainly does. I can’t be held responsible for that… can I?
What I hope is that when the anger is over, the book continues to haunt. I suspect it will. A stranger returning from a strange land brings back memories.
(Courtesy of books-music-life.blogspot.com)