The Alabaster Girl
The Alabaster Girl by Zan Perrion is a difficult book to review. On its own, it reads as a literary ode to women, to their wooing and seduction, to their beauty and sensuality, to a lifelong pursuit of them. When taken into consideration with the author’s long history as a master of seduction, it reads more as a manifesto, but taken as a novel, then it’s highly literary, poetic, and engaging, though, rather amorphous.
At its core, the story of The Alabaster Girl is a modern-day Casanova on a train being interviewed by a female journalist. He relates his theory and experience of seduction, but makes it clear that he’s not a man who uses women and discards them, but one who genuinely enjoys them. At intervals, excerpts from the narrator’s book, The Alabaster Girl, describes his lifelong pursuit of women. If the reader lacks this basic understanding of the plot going in, they will be in for a very confusing read. And this is where some of the confusion over this book comes into play. If a reader approaches this book thinking it details the author’s views of women, which indeed it possibly may (this remains unclear), then some readers will be turned off by his ideas. On the other hand, those same ideals will resonate with other readers.
That being said, the writing itself is rich. It can run repetitive at times as the narrator emphasizes and re-emphasizes certain points of his philosophy, but, for the most part, The Alabaster Girl is highly poetic, sharp, and engaging. It’s easy to fall into the rabbit hole of the narrator’s musings, part poem and part half-remembered dreams. The book is an ode to a deep appreciation of women and to the dance of the masculine and feminine as old as time.
Ars Amorata Press