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‘Their Shared Cup’
King of Dogs by Andrew Edwards
324 pages
Published by Golden Goat Guild
Set in the current era, “in the midst of the country’s dismantling,” by oligarchic forces, King of Dogs is a novel with insightful sweep, characterization that is unusually deep for a story with larger meaning and is headed by a balanced protagonist, alienated largely by his self-discipline and travel making him a wanderer of two sorts. The protagonist, Grayson, is a leading man that will not be too hyper-masculine for the sensitive sons of Aryas to follow as a hero.
The story is born in brotherhood, a state-of-being under attack and the economic and societal perspectives, written I suppose no later than 2019, mark the author as unusually aware of the drift this dying nation was likely to take. The scenes are set with beauty, decay and peopled empathetically. The characters are realistically wrought, even in passing.
I have enjoyed reading King of Dogs from the first page and regard the unfolding social-scape of the novel as the mark of an important and timely work.
For that reason I will do multiple reviews without spoiling anything.
As my reading time is limited and my eyes failing, I avoid most fiction reading in favor of deeper things. I did this initial review on the train from the PDF. The author was nice enough to send an audio-link so I can listen to the rest now that I have internet for a month. In the case of culturally important fiction like King of Dogs, there is an initial test read:
Can the author hold my interest after the first page =Yes.
Can the author build my interest after the third scene =Yes.
When does the novel take off and ignite my desire to read it all right now?
The answer is page 23.
Andy has got me hooked less than 10% in, which is a good show, with a scene fraught with peril but nuanced with hate, love, alienation, suspicion, loyalty, the potential for alliance and annihilation.
King of Dogs is worth the rest of the time it will take to read it.
I will return to it in a second review. Until then, here are a few choice quotes from the first 5% of the story.
“And because the promise was a true promise, or because the gift was given as the giver lay divided between the known and the unknown worlds, the many threads of time and of miles were drawn taut into a type of tapestry of being, a focusing, that has many names but is never entirely seen or understood, the domain of God alone. He who cannot be faced head on.”
“…those countervailing forces, gratitude and sacrifice, which powered this fluid machine of sorrow called the world.”
“Apathy and deceit are ancient enablers.”
Thanks, Andy, for providing me with the PDF and the audio link—Grayson’s world is upon us.
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Add Comment
GraceAugust 20, 2020 2:49 PM UTC

This is an exceptional story. I’ve read King of Dogs multiple times and find something new with each pass. It would make one hell of a film!
responds:August 21, 2020 11:18 AM UTC

Andrew's novel has helped me with some non-fiction writing as it's a realistic and imaginative portrayal of the subject matter.