Bentley Little, an author who has a penchant for taking the ordinary and making it extraordinary, takes on Greek mythology and gives it its place in the horror fiction genre. He takes the story of the mythological characters Dionysus and the Maenads and puts a new spin on it.
Dion Semele, a teenager who is mature beyond his years, lives with his mother, April, in Arizona. His mom is not exactly like other moms, as she has an extremely carnal nature and her sexual escapades seem to create problems for her and embarrass her son. So, they are now moving to California, where they can start fresh. His mother feels a strange compulsion to move to the Napa Valley, northern California's wine country. Unfortunately, once she moves there she seems unable to keep her promise to her son to act more motherly.
Penelope Daneam is a young blond beauty whom Dion meets in his new high school. She lives on the estate of a winery owned by her mother, or rather, mothers, all twelve of them. Penelope and Dion hit it off, and their relationship is strongly encouraged by her mothers, who certainly have a strange way of acting around Dion. As Dion and Penelope's relationship progresses, a change seems to be going on in their environs, as the wine her mothers are selling seem to be causing people to shed their inhibitions. It also looks as if Dion has an intricate part to play in what Penelope's mothers have planned.
Of course, once the master plan is set in motion, all hell breaks loose. This book, which started off promisingly enough, degenerates into a bacchanalian nightmare. It goes totally over the top with raping and pillaging being the standard behavior of its characters. There is a lot of graphic, violent, and destructive sexual behavior with some incest tossed in for good measure. In this respect, the author has been over indulgent. Consequently, this is definitely not a book for everyone.