introducing readers to writers since 1995

March 25, 2005

A Mini-Domer Reunion in Chelsea

by Ron Hogan

I went out to see my old college classmate Kevin Guilfoile do a reading from Cast of Shadows last night, and ended up running into a bunch of other Notre Dame alum I hadn't seen in about fifteen years. The book's a thriller rooted--and I'm doing this loosely so as not to give away much--in human cloning, so Kevin took the real-life tensions surrounding the abortion controversy, including the terrorist activities of Christian fanatics, and used them to describe the battle over cloning that takes place in his story, which he describes not quite as science fiction but an "alternative present." Thus, the first section he read was from the perspective of an anti-cloning terrorist, tracing the evolution (so to speak) of his violent ideology, while a second passage explored the increasing agnosticism of the doctor whose left-field reaction to his daughter's murder sets the book's plot in motion. Early in the Q&A period, somebody asked Kevin what the significance of the title was, and so he spent the rest of the evening flipping through the book between questions about how to create strong plots and characters, trying to find the "cast of shadows" passage. No such luck, even with helpful advice supplied by The Morning News Rosecrans Baldwin, who came with co-chief Andrew Womack to cheer on their contributing writer.

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