by William Golding
There are some books that for whatever reason just don’t quite satisfy or live up to expectation. Unfortunately, “The Spire” proved to be just such a book. From the very first page a felt disconnected from the main character and his story.
William Golding is one of the most celebrated writers of the twentieth century; his classic “Lord Of The Flies” is required reading in literature classes. I myself read the book at school and have gone on to read several more. But for me “The Spire”, despite the claims of critics, is just not in the same league.
The story centres around Dean Jocelin who believes that God has chosen him to build a spire on is Cathedral. But the building has no foundations and everyone, including the builder he hires to help him realise his vision. But Jocelin is determined, even obsessed, and pushes himself and all those around him to extremes to ensure the spire is built.
Throughout the book, Jocelin faces demons both real and imaginary. He is tormented and sadly, so is the story. Maybe I was not in the right frame of mind to appreciate this book, but for me “The Spire” failed to inspire. As you might expect, the book is well written and full of insight, but the story lacks the very foundations that threaten the Dean’s vision.