<b>Lights, camera, action fill Moody's latest</b> The story, it's incredible, it's like this gigantic story, spanning a thousand years. If that sounds like a semi-articulate pitch for a television event, you're half-right. It's Vanessa Meandro, head of the indie film company Means Of Production, briefing her mom on the plot of The Diviners, a far-reaching epic that centers on the miraculous individuals throughout history who have slaked the thirsts of the masses, with both water and <i>so much more</i>, if you catch her drift. After all, who would want to watch a miniseries about mere well-diggers?Rick Moody's writing career includes two highly regarded short story collections, four novels and an award-winning memoir entitled <i>The Black Veil</i>. In his latest novel, which shares its title with the aforementioned miniseries, Moody takes a rapier to the intersection of ambition and pop culture, sliding his point in as deftly as a plastic surgeon's Botox injection.
Don't be lulled into a reverie by <b>The Diviners</b>' opening, which, in almost chant-like fashion, describes the dawning of day across the planet. The book almost immediately ramps up into hyperdrive, with frenetic dialogue and fast-paced interplay peppered throughout. The breathless five-page pitch Meandro hurtles at the UBC television network VP satisfies in its manic way as much as Lucky's monologue in <i>Waiting for Godot</i>.
As for the miniseries itself? <i>Caveat emptor</i>, as the two main screenwriters in contention for the gig are, respectively, a self-important wine critic and a self-important Supreme Court justice. Hubris abounds, as the would-be screenwriter critic reflects, His editor has often told him he has a novel in him, for example, and if not a novel, why not a sixteen episode mini-series, with a three-hour pilot, that goes from the dawn of man up to the millennium? <i>Thane Tierney is a record executive in Los Angeles.</i>