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Messiahby Andrei Codrescu
Synopses & Reviews
From the author of the acclaimed and ravishing The Blood Countess comes Messiah, a novel chronicling the onset of millennial fever and the universal yearning for a Messiah. Set against a backdrop of warring religious fundamentalist factions, social upheaval, and mystical inspiration, Messiah combines Codrescu's sonorous prose with mordant social commentary and incandescent characters.
Messiah combs through the artifacts of American millennial culture with adroit examinations of cyberspace, fundamentalist religion, sex, and the cult of celebrity. Set from December 1999 to Mardi Gras 2000, Messiah introduces two remarkable young women: Felicity, a girl detective in New Orleans, and Andrea, a Sarajevan orphan who has found asylum in Jerusalem after internment in a Serbian POW camp. Felicity and Andrea, both presciently self-aware, come to believe they are the two severed halves of a whole entity, eventually finding each other amid the chaos of millennial fervor. Their special mission: to fulfill an extraordinary destiny as Armageddon sweeps the earth.
In the months prior to their fated meeting, the charismatic Felicity attracts a group of followers, a tribe of pierced and tattooed young drifters called Shades, who, under the direction of Felicity and her inimitable uncle, Major Notz, come into epic conflict with their various enemies. Chief among them are Mullin, a powerful Christian fundamentalist preacher, and his ghoulish coterie of militant religious fanatics. All factions strive to establish themselves as saviors at the world's end and seek to manipulate the allegiances of the populace through all branches of the media. In the Big Easy at the turn of the century, there seems to be no shortage of would-be Messiahs.
Messiah is host to a world turned upside down, a universe teeming with battling eschatological forces, sexual and psychological perversity, and unlikely heroes. The interpenetration of earthly sensuality, prophecy, and cyberspace renders a complex and pulsating tale.
About the Author
Andrei Codrescu is a poet, novelist, and essayist. His radio essays have been heard on National Public Radio for fifteen years. He has written and starred in Road Scholar, a Peabody Award-winning film. His last novel, The Blood Countess, was a national bestseller.
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