My next post will be about Rudyard Kipling's Captain's Courageous. One of the reasons I read Captains Courageous is that a friend recommended it, another is that I was interested in reading a book about a teenager written before the term "YA" existed, and the third is that last summer I read Victoria Vinton's The Jungle Law.
The Jungle Law is fictionalized account of the time Rudyard Kipling lived in Vermont. One of the great things about a novel that blends fact and fiction is that it can go deeper into the mind of a real person than might be possible in straight non-fiction. I loved reading about Kipling's creative process, and I was especially taken with this passage:
"...his Daemon has arrived. He can feel it like a change in the wind or a quickening of the pulse, the presence of the numinous spirit he believes inspires his work. For this he's been accused of false modesty, of denying his own toil and gifts, but he knows better than his critics. He knows he is only a vessel. And all he must do now is what his Daemon asks: he must drift and wait and obey." (16)
I'm enchanted by the idea of an unseen muse, and this description of Kipling's relationship with his Daemon intrigued me and made me realize that I've yet to read one of his books...until now. So next, I'll write about one of the gifts Kipling's Daemon delivered.
[Vinton, Victoria. The Jungle Law. San Francisco: MacAdam/Cage, 2005.]