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    Review of THE INEXQUISITE EYE by D. B. Smith

    Xlibris Corporation, 2000

    Click to buy AN INEXQUISITE EYE from Elissa Laughlin struggles through life with the certainty that she will fail and a wish to avoid making the fatal decision that will lead to her failure. She'll even accept unhappiness if it lets her retain the dream that happiness could have been possible. Her ultimate fear is the discovery that her dreams were unattainable (and not simply unattained) and that her entire life was pointless. In her aggressive pursuit of this absence, Elissa offends the members of her law firm, engages in a tempestuous and ultimately destructive relationship with a lover, and bickers with her family without quite being able to forgive them for being less than her dreams.

    Author D. B. Smith is a powerful new writer who can make his anti-heroic protagonist and her struggle seem sympathetic (although sometimes that sympathy is mixed with an active desire to shake Elissa out of her self-destructive behaviors). I would have liked to have more understanding of why lover Warren put up with her for as long as he did--did he share a different variety of Elissa's self-destructiveness, however. Although Warren was presented as an active and decisive man, his willingness to accept so much of Elissa's abuse makes him seem whimpy.

    AN INEXQUISITE EYE is thought-provoking and powerful. It may hold some of the angst that more mature authors outgrow, but is certainly written with a mature and elegant hand.

    Three Stars

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