If there's a flaw in this cosmology, it's that Banville gets so caught up in his own rule making and rule breaking that the humans feel undeveloped — there's not much they there. This is true of a good deal of his writing: character development takes a back seat to narrative observation. The exceptions are his crime novels, which he writes under the name of Benjamin Black. Perhaps the discipline of the genre forces him to put more flesh on those bones.
At any rate, there's plenty of meat elsewhere in this godshead-revisited of a novel. And it ends with as big a bang as the one with which it begins. The gods, they must be happy with Mr. Banville.
JOHN BANVILLE | Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St, Cambridge | February 23 at 6 pm | $5 | 617.661.1515 or www.harvard.com
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