Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Description: Opening on the windswept front of Morecambe Bay, on the remote north-west coast of England, The Electric Michelangelo is a novel of love, loss and the art of tattooing.
In the uniquely sensuous and lyrical prose that has already become her trademark, Sarah Hall's remarkable new novel tells the story of Cy Parks, from his childhood years spent in a seaside guest house for consumptives with his mother, Reeda, to his apprenticeship as a tattoo artist with Eliot Riley - a scraper with a reputation as a Bolshevik and a drinker to boot.
His skills acquired and a thirst for experience burning within him, Cy departs for America and the riotous world of the Coney Island boardwalk, where he sets up his own business as "The Electric Michelangelo." In this carnival environment of roller-coasters and freak-shows, while the crest of the Edwardian amusement industry wave is breaking, Cy becomes enamoured with Grace, a mysterious East European immigrant and circus performer who commissions him to cover her body entirely with tattooed eyes.
Hugely atmospheric, exotic, and familiar, The Electric Michelangelo is a love story and an exquisitely rendered portrait of seaside resorts on opposite sides of the Atlantic by one of the most uniquely talented novelists of her generation.