The Damascene (Paperback)
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The Damascene is an in-depth fictional expansion of the Old Testament's II Kings 5, which contains what may be the very first beauty-and-the-beast-like story. Personal transformation, whether physical or spiritual, is not initially sought by the main character, but he nevertheless experiences it on more than one level. Other characters as well are subjected to their own trials, some with which we all might identify. Infused with deep sensuality and spotted with bloody battles and suspenseful incidents of personal survival, this novel also offers a few moments of comic relief without diverting from its portrayal of true love graphically contrasted with lust, of personal weakness on a collision course with friendship and duty, of tribalism challenged by individualism, and of worldly skepticism in confrontation with the very idea that spiritual power may actually exist.