|About the Book|
Edward Hower is a writer of talent and substance.-William KennedySpiritualism, the conviction that the dead are able to contact living people from an afterworld, became popular in America after the Civil War, when grief-stricken survivors tried toMoreEdward Hower is a writer of talent and substance.-William KennedySpiritualism, the conviction that the dead are able to contact living people from an afterworld, became popular in America after the Civil War, when grief-stricken survivors tried to contact the fallen. In an era of breakaway churches and rampant industrialization, ordinary people sought desperately to prove to themselves they possessed immortal souls. Spiritualism was also one of the few venues that offered women a chance to lead.One such woman was Madame Helena Blavatsky, a Russian-born mystic who used her considerable intellectual gifts to rise to the top of the spiritualist hierarchy. Together with her partner, Colonel Henry Steel Olcott, a popular journalist and Civil War hero, she attracted many of the leading celebrities of the age, such as Thomas Edison and Abner Doubleday in New York- and in London, W.B. Yeats, and the young Mohandas P. Gandhi. But, hounded by the press and subjected to scathing ridicule, they moved from the parlors of Gilded Age New York to the slums of Bombay then again to Ceylon, attempting to spread their ideas.Loosely based on the lives of Blavatsky and Olcott, Shadows and Elephants follows two unforgettable fictional creations, passionate in their friendship, courageous in the face of public humiliation, and devoted absolutely to contacting the souls of the deceased in order to learn from their wisdom. Shadows and Elephants is a sensuous historical novel with totally contemporary resonance, for indeed, spiritualism has survived for over 130 years- reshaped in todays eclectic New Age beliefs.Edward Hower is the author of four previous novels. His writings have appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic Monthly, Smithsonian- his reviews in the nations most prestigious book pages. He has been awarded numerous creative writing grants. He lives in Ithaca, NY.