ON THE ROAD WITH THE ARCHANGEL (1997)
One of the brightest lights in late-twentieth-century literature, Frederick Buechner has added continuously to the ranks of his fiercely loyal following with each new book he writes. On the Road with the Archangel is sure to continue this tradition with its powerful blend of humor, artistry, and insight into the nature of the human and the divine.
Inspired by events in the apocryphal Book of Tobit, from the second century B.C., this is the magical tale of two families brought together, as no mere coincidence, by the devilishly clever archangel Raphael. One is the family of Tobit, a virtuous man who can no longer support his wife and son because of Raguel: the quiet, devoted father of Sarah whose pact with the demon Asmodeus has left her life in tragic shambles. Assuming human form, Raphael appears before Tabias, Tobit's devoted son, to help him retrieve his father's fortune hidden in a faraway city. Together, they embark on a miraculous journey in search of the answers to both families' prayers—a journey that is made challenging and delightful by Rapheal's artful efficiency.
On the Road with the Archangel is a masterful combination of fluid writing, lyrical storytelling, and ancient truth blended with modern wisdom. And beneath it all lies a subtle, glowing meditation on the nature of the Holy.
“Hailed as ‘one of our most original storytellers’ (USA Today), Pulitzer Prize finalist author Frederick Buechner has written an extraordinary new novel that shines with the mystery and wonder of the divine.”
"This clergyman can tell a story that has a theological dimension without sounding sanctimonious or trite, partly because his writing style is based on contemporary speech and partly because his turn of mind is ironic, unsentimental. He's been able to update Mark Twain's sense of comedy, so that his books, no matter how exotic the setting or characters, always sound idiomatically American."
— Alfred Corn, The New York Times Book Review