"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
Jerusalem: A Novel by Alan Moore
Expected publication: September 13th 2016 by Liveright Publishing Corporation
In the half a square mile of decay and demolition that was England’s Saxon capital, eternity is loitering between the firetrap tower blocks. Embedded in the grubby amber of the district’s narrative among its saints, kings, prostitutes and derelicts a different kind of human time is happening, a soiled simultaneity that does not differentiate between the petrol-coloured puddles and the fractured dreams of those who navigate them. Fiends last mentioned in the Book of Tobit wait in urine-scented stairwells, the delinquent spectres of unlucky children undermine a century with tunnels, and in upstairs parlours labourers with golden blood reduce fate to a snooker tournament.
Disappeared lanes yield their own voices, built from lost words and forgotten dialect, to speak their broken legends and recount their startling genealogies, family histories of shame and madness and the marvellous. There is a conversation in the thunderstruck dome of St. Paul’s cathedral, childbirth on the cobblestones of Lambeth Walk, an estranged couple sitting all night on the cold steps of a Gothic church-front, and an infant choking on a cough drop for eleven chapters. An art exhibition is in preparation, and above the world a naked old man and a beautiful dead baby race along the Attics of the Breath towards the heat death of the universe.
An opulent mythology for those without a pot to piss in, through the labyrinthine streets and pages of Jerusalem tread ghosts that sing of wealth and poverty; of Africa, and hymns, and our threadbare millennium. They discuss English as a visionary language from John Bunyan to James Joyce, hold forth on the illusion of mortality post-Einstein, and insist upon the meanest slum as Blake’s eternal holy city. Fierce in its imagining and stupefying in its scope, this is the tale of everything, told from a vanished gutter.
To be completely honest, as intrigued as I am, and as much as I admire Moore's graphic novel work, I'm just not sure I have it in me to give this a read. It's over 1 million words, and contains a chapter dealing with the fourth dimension, one written like a Samuel Beckett play, and one completely "incomprehensible" chapter written in a completely invented sub-Joycean text. Um, yeah. I'm fascinated, and intensely curious, but really want to see a few reviews before considering it.