THE THEOLOGIAN by William Harrison


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A drama which generates its own drive and dabbles in some of the murkier elements introduces Randle Fast, a theological student in Nashville, Tennessee, in the '30's where he is engaged in research outside his discipline and is attracted by mystical and psychological phenomena. He is also engaged in an affair, certainly more erotic than evangelical, with the wife of the teacher with whom he boards and he falls quite deeply in love with the paradoxical, passionate Nelda Rummell. Her husband, as malicious as he is suspicious, sees that Fast's fellowship is dropped and removes Nelda; Fast then marries the apologetic, crippled Doris who takes him to Southern Texas and a thankless post teaching illiterates in a provincial, fundamentalist college. There Confined by the deadliness of his work and Doris' devotion, he is more and more obsessed by his feverish fantasies of Nelda and darker dreams which bring him into the supernatural ""presence of evil."" Harrison's backgrounds, from the tight little ecclesiastical community in Nashville to the deadspot in Texas come through sharply and savagely and his story proceeds at a hellbent pace and cannot help but commit your attention. The market? perhaps that of the early Davis Grubb.

Pub Date: Sept. 22nd, 1965
Publisher: Harper & Row