THE HOUSE OF MADELAINE by Elaine Kraf

THE HOUSE OF MADELAINE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Slipping in and out of gear and sometimes meshing, viewing the world or really another world in high color (fuchsia primarily), lapsing into a strange tongue (as in Rose Garden), and shifting, dividing and subdividing, that's Elaine/Madelaine at some school or house or -- Jealously she eyes Gerard/ Joseph, her lover/husband/murderer; has her sessions/seances with Sir Phalatrope, sometimes a magician in a cap lined with gold dust, sometimes appearing in a plain suit. During the latter she is asked to accept her sexuality with some eclectic ""eroticizing"" but then again there are those frightening surgical procedures; later she is brought to trial for the murder of her husband, or is it herself she has destroyed; always she is reluctant to lose her Madelaine, who protects her in an ""empty world."" Isolated. ""Or is this true insanity?"" As in I Am Clarence (1969) this is an amalgam/collage of the fissionable world of the schizophrenic, heightened to an extent by the febrile acuity of the first person but never quite managing to touch the reader which it must if it is to overcome the liability such books encounter in the harsher light of reality.

Pub Date: June 11th, 1971
Publisher: Doubleday