Reflections: Gentlemen of the Road

Michael Chabon knows narrative. He knows male/male friendship bonds. He knows modern American Jewish culture. In Gentlemen of the Road he brings them all together...again. As in The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Chabon has mixed together his essential ingredients to come up with a new and exciting recipe for the reader's delectation.

Gentlemen keeps its eyes upon two highwaymen of the Sherwood Forest type. Zelikman and Amram wander the roads of medieval Asia, doing what it takes to make ends meet. Like other mythical highwaymen (and comic book characters) these two are ennobled by conscience. Furthermore, they are pleasantly infallible with the use of blades and axes, horses and hats. Along the road, performing their usual con routine, they stumble into the possession/company of a royal and fiery youth, in exile due to a coup d'etat that has left the teen friendless and hunted, but not without inner resources. Their sense of justice leads them, on something other than the straight and narrow path, to champion the royal cause.

No comments: