In 1854, Didier Rain is hired to escort Virtue to the City of Rocks in the western United States, where she will become a bride to the Prophet Nehi, who runs the Church of the Restructured Truth. From the very start, I knew this would be an unusual novel, but I wasn’t prepared for just how unusual. Not only does Rain have to cross a large part of the country on horseback, but the bride he must protect is only a baby. However, Virtue is no ordinary child, and Rain proves to be no ordinary man, even though at the first he appears to be the most typical man imaginable.
When I say Rain is typical, I don’t mean this as an insult. In fact, it’s part of the reason I found the book so enjoyable. Kindall manages to create in Rain a flawed character, who is nevertheless compelling, in large part because of those flaws. Rain is poetic yet dense, irresolute yet willing to stick to his principles, and affectionate yet distasteful. (At least, I would find him distasteful were I to meet him in person; as a fictional character, I find him delightful). He is easily the most developed character in the book, and it is that development and those paradoxes which make the book so worth reading.
The story of Rain’s journey with Virtue is well-paced, moving quickly without feeling rushed. The narration is beautiful, which is rare for such an irreverent book, but that only made it more wonderful to read. There were a few times here and there where the rich descriptions felt jarring, and I did wish occasionally that the other characters had a touch more development, but overall, Delivering Virtue is a very enjoyable book. If you find yourself grinning even half as often as I did, you’ll agree that it’s a remarkable piece of fiction.
|Page Count||264 pages|
|Publisher||Diving Boy Books|
|Bookshop.org||Buy this Book|