On the Precipice of Labyrinth
by Brian Snowden
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Pub Date 01 Mar 2022 | Archive Date 06 Jun 2022
Author Brian Snowden is publishing his third novel, “On the Precipice of the Labyrinth”, which brings to life the turmoil in Spain during the 1930s from the perspective of a young American man. Snowden is an experienced writer and college professor, and his extensive familiarity with the Spanish language, travels to Spain and knowledge of the history of Spain make this a compelling read.
The Spanish Civil War is a major conflict often overlooked due to the other events that were occurring during the tumultuous decade of the 1930s. Europe was going through a transition period bridging World War I and World War II. There was the rise of Adolf Hitler in Germany, the exploits of Benito Mussolini in Italy, and the difficulties of the spread of Communism as a response to impending dictatorships. Spain was struggling not only with the recognition of its complex past with the Conquests in the Americas but also with the establishment of a new identity in the twentieth century.
“On the Precipice of the Labyrinth” is the story of a young American, William Bennett, who has learned the Spanish language in his hometown of Charlottesville and had exposure to what is happening in Europe due to his father’s position as a professor at the University of Virginia. Bennet has learned enough that he is highly compelled to visit Spain and find out for himself what the situation is.
Bennett sets out of his sojourn completely alone. He crosses the Atlantic working on a cargo ship, arrives in northern France, and manages to travel to the Spanish border doing odd jobs and hitchhiking. When he arrives in Spain he has a series of encounters with some people who provide some insights, and eventually establishes relationships with the other three key individuals in the novel. Bennett unwittingly becomes involved in a precarious journey that exposes him to the political, cultural and religious difficulties in Spain, with life-altering consequences for all four.
A Note From the Publisher
The family spent two years in France when Snowden was a child. The time in Europe exposed Snowden to the cultures and history of several countries in western Europe. In France he had his first introduction to Romance Languages, and has since studied Spanish, Italian and Portuguese. Snowden had two career phases. The first was working in the business world for twenty-five years, primarily in international business. The second was as a college professor at the Cincinnati Branch of Wilmington College for fifteen years. He has lived in seven states and traveled to more than forty-five countries.
Snowden has had a lifelong interest in a wide variety of subjects. These include Romance languages and linguistics, history, psychology and especially philosophy. He has degrees in Spanish - BA from the U. of Virginia; Master’s in Global Business from Thunderbird Graduate School of Global Management; a PhD in Organizational Behavior & Development from the Union Institute & University. His favorite authors include John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, Philip Roth, John Irving, Charles Dickens and Thomas Hardy.
“I just finished reading this book and didn't realize until it was too late, that I was hooked! This book offers a unique glance into a young man's life, his family, friends, and adventures with women. By the end of the book, I feel like I know the main character, and I can't wait for a sequel.” D. Chase
“An evenly flowing read with quite crisp imagery. The novel competently focuses on character development for the first two-thirds and then incorporates a well placed clue from the beginning to develop an unexpected climax in the plot.Thematically, the novel engages the reader with a spectrum of conflicting emotions and feelings including anguish, sexual tension, and the sense of general ennui that can result from life's many disappointments. All in all, an engaging read with a twist at the end.” George V W. (Spring, TX.)
“This book gives me the same great feeling I experience when watching a classic movie on cable. The style Brian writes is rich and varied. The reader feels close to the characters.”
“Rather long but very readable story which includes a number of interesting characters, held together by a man whose lifetime experiences are unique and happily concludes on a note of optimism for those who suffer mental anguish. Great read on a long flight---it will help relieve your boredom.” F. Lawrence