How Like an Angel: A Novel
Jack Driscoll University of Michigan Press, 2005 Library of Congress PS3554.R496H69 2005 | Dewey Decimal 813.54
"How Like an Angel is a powerfully imagined, lyrically wrought novel, overflowing with the senses. Jack Driscoll is a marvel."
"How Like an Angel is a lyrical, lonely ode to fatherhood, an aria in words that looks forward and backward at once. Jack Driscoll is a writer of deep heart, relentless honesty, uncanny gentleness, and irresistible spirit."
How Like an Angel is the story of Archibald Angel. With his career going nowhere and a marriage in decline, Angel retreats to a rustic cabin in northern Michigan to make a new life for himself.
In spite of his forward thinking, Angel's move is in many ways a journey into the past. Besides lacking modern comforts, the cabin conjures the ghost of Angel's troubled childhood, when his undertaker father took the cabin in trade as payment from a widow who couldn't otherwise afford the cost of her husband's burial. After Angel's mother subsequently fled, abandoning her family to recover from a mental breakdown, the cabin was an escape for father and son.
While Archibald Angel revisits his knotted and difficult past, his ex-wife and young son contemplate their future. Slowly, with unexpected help from an unpredictable woman, Angel realizes he too must find a way to begin again or risk failing his son as his own father failed him.
With pathos, humor, and unflagging generosity of spirit, How Like an Angel takes us deep into the hinterland of the human heart and discovers there the source of the love that keeps us holding on against all odds.