My (brief) take on Eugene Woodbury’s Angel Falling Softly

Here’s the blurb I provided Zarahemla Books for Eugene Woodbury’s vampire/Mormon novel Angel Falling Softly:

In melding the vampire genre with Mormon literary fiction, Eugene Woodbury has created a hybrid that is startling, fresh, insightful and heartbreaking. When I first heard of this audacious project, I was both skeptical and excited. What’s remarkable about Angel Falling Softly isn’t just that Eugene does something new with vampire tropes (that in this case also involve the worlds of bio-tech and high finance) or that he provides a complex, touching portrait of a Mormon mother desperately trying to save her terminally ill child. It’s that he weaves these elements together with well-deployed literary (often Biblical) allusions and quotations that add substance to the questions raised about belief, redemption, desire, sin and death. The novel is insistently literary while being solidly genre-based. Sounds pretty cool, right? And yet what most amazed me is that he pulls it all off without violating the supernatural and metaphysical boundaries of
Mormonism or of the vampire genre. Which is not to say that the story is believable — it’s fantasy — but rather that by enforcing (and pushing against) these boundaries, he plays the two worlds against each other in way that maximizes reading pleasure and says something new about the Mormon experience

Angel Falling Softly is available from Zarahemla Books. Also be sure to check out Eugene Woodbury’s Web site.

Content Warning: AMV draws readers from a fairly wide spectrum of the Mormon audience. Thus, I think it’s only fair to warn that Angel Falling Softly contains a couple of scenes of foreplayish but not at all sexy vampire seductions (that end in feedings  — not sex) and one scene of marital sex that is sort of graphic but more with metaphorical than descriptive terms. None of the scenes are gratuitous — meaning they add to the story and the development of characters and the consequences of the story would be lessened without them. Nor are they particularly arousing. And really, parts of the Bible are much more sexy than what’s found in the novel.