Monday, March 10, 2014

In "Mount Terminus" David Grand has written a novel about the early days of Hollywood that has many of the elements of a Cecil B. DeMille biblical epic.  The Rosenbloom family  - father and son - has decamped from the East Coast to the wild canyons of Los Angeles to escape the aftermath of a complex family tragedy.  Jacob has become a recluse who tinkers with optical devices.  His son, Bloom, lives in enforced isolation on the family estate atop Mount Terminus overlooking the growing City of Angels.

As the complicated plot develops, Bloom discovers the existence of a half-brother who is a Hollywood mogul in the making.  The many layers of family history and family scandal emerge as if they are scenes from a silent film.  The relationship between the two brothers changes when the father dies, leaving a vast estate to Bloom, and revealing long-hidden secrets about deals that have been made and coerced bargains agreed to.

The biblical shadows are everywhere in this story - Rachel and Leah sharing the same lover.  The brothers Rosenbloom developing a love hate relationship not too different from that of Jacob and Esau.  There is even a flood of Noahic proportions.  Several versions of paradise are pursued and described.

The author kept me turning the pages to find out what would happen next to a growing cast of characters about whom I cared despite their quirky natures.



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