“Brother Cobweb” will be published by Open Books Publishing during the Easter season 2020. More details to come .
The following are two quotes that informed me during the long process of writing “Brother Cobweb.”
Dahlia Lama: “We don’t need more success stories. We need more storytellers.”
Luigi Nono: “Seeker, there may be no destination, but you must travel the path.”
Synopsis of the novel, “BROTHER COBWEB”:
Seven-year-old CALVIN ELKAN is obsessed with drawing, but his art takes the form of protest when he opens a drawing pad and creates the comic-strip character BROTHER COBWEB while sitting on the wooden pews of his mother NANCY’S Ohio Pentecostal church. Satirizing her preacher HARRY DUSHANE, Calvin’s art takes flight.
Possessing a spiritual bond with his eccentric grandfather; POP, Calvin is introduced to a magical world of Leonard Bernstein, Superman, Wagner operas, Charles Darwin, and a mermaid bride. Pop’s imagined paradise is Calvin’s inspired sanctuary away from the tongue-speaking zealots of the ho-de-ho, backwoods sawdust-on-the-floor LIGHTHOUSE CHURCH.
A near-death experience threatens to be Calvin’s snake in the garden, but his actual fall from grace arrives on Christmas day with the death of his beloved Pop. With the floodgates of sin opened, Nancy attempts to white-out Calvin’s protector when she begins subjecting her son to horrific abuse.
Pushed down by a spiritually bankrupt religion and the evangelical status-quo, Calvin zig-zags in and out of a self-fashioned station of the cross; complete with swirling biblical-like plagues, an angelic protector from a Christmas view-master reel, apocalyptic revelations, art galleries, betrayals, murder, and haunted house attractions. With the aid of a Catholic aunt and spiritual directors from mystery schools, Calvin, struggling to evolve through the horrors of hypocrisy, finds himself in forever shifting sanctuaries while seeking an Eden of the Blessed Mother.