My favorite thing about magical realism is that it is often used to discuss social and cultural issues, colonialism, the powerful and elite, environmental issues, racism, war, homophobia, genocide, and more. It can also be used to talk about social issues that are equally as important but maybe not as heavy. That’s why I love Melmoth by Sarah Perry – because magical realism is used to cover a gambit of social and historical issues.
In the novel, Perry focuses on a mythical figure called Melmoth the Witness who preys upon people in the darkest moments of their lives. Through this mythical figure, Perry discusses everything from Nazi Germany to fear, sins, loneliness, and self-loathing with a magical lens. I loved the grit and darkness of this magical realism story and I know you will too.