Annunciation by David Plante

1994, Hardcover

"The characters in David Plante's exquisitely wrought eighth novel, "Annunciation," are poised at the edge of a spiritual abyss that divides a world of atheism from a world in which God exists. As Plante would have it, both believers and non-believers suffer equally from an existential malaise that is, at once, far-reaching, undefinable and deeply troubling.

Blending two distinct narratives and moving gracefully between New York, London, Italy and Russia, this is perhaps Plante's broadest novel to date.

Himself a lapsed Catholic, Plante describes the church services, the poised, elegant movements of the priests, with the power of someone who is obsessed with that which he either cannot have or can no longer believe in. Having forbidden himself the comfort of religion, on some level he still yearns for it-at once fascinated and repulsed. The principal characters of "Annunciation" may reject God, but they are obsessed with the idea of divinity."
- Joseph Olshan, The Chicago Tribune