Review – The Go-Lem by Mark Woods – from The Literary Librarian

(Review by Persia Black of The Literary Librarian)

“Mark Wood’s Go-Lem is a break out novel, with all of the depth of the best literary novel and the action of a block buster movie. This book satisfies the reader’s intellect and thirst for excitement, and is truly a stand out novel.” (see full review below)

Books Description for The Go-Lem:

Everyone thinks they know the story of the Go-lem – the ancient legend in Jewish folklore that tells of a creature fashioned form clay, brought to life to exact revenge upon the enemies of God’s chosen people – but as one man is about to discover, the story that you think you know is only the beginning of the story…

Review: 5 stars

The original tale of the Golem has never really intrigued me. It was a tale of monsters and vengeance which has always left me a little flat. However, Mr. Wood’s version far exceeds the original vision of the folklore, and pushes its way into literary fiction as an in-depth character study that is both inspiring and tragic, mixed with the action and tension of a good horror novel.

The book, rather than taken from the view point of the victim or from the person who activates the Golem, is instead seen from the “monster’s” point of view. I put monster in quotation marks because, truly, no one sees themselves as a monster (unless you’re a serial killer, I suppose, and you enjoy that sort of thing). This was a brilliant move, for the Golem has now been made a person, and from his vantage point we can see the true tragedy of his situation.

The Golem hates no one – loves no one – for his right as an individual has been robbed from him. He is the ultimate slave, awoken only when his master bids that he murders a total stranger. After that, he is put back to sleep – reducing him to being a thing, a non-person, a toy – placed back on the shelf until someone feels the desire to play with him once more.

Imagine how a life of this would warp someone’s psyche? You are completely socially isolated from everyone. The centuries pass, the world is constantly in change, and the only constant in your life is man’s inhumanity to man. If the story ended here, it would be a simple tragedy. But the author ingeniously takes it to the next step.

The Golem escapes his slavery. Over the years he struggles to deal with the emotional scars and to rise above them. And with any real person, he suffers several cruel set backs.

Of course, there is more to the book than this, it is, after all, a horror novel. In the background, the reader is taken through a tour of some of man kind’s darkest moments, brutal wars and the intrigue of being a non-human assassin. Indeed, this book moves at a rapid pace, with many tense, edge-of-the-seat moments.

Mark Wood’s Go-Lem is a break out novel, with all of the depth of the best literary novel and the action of a block buster movie. This book satisfies the reader’s intellect and thirst for excitement, and is truly a stand out novel.