Waking The Moon Hardcover – May 25 1995
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From Publishers Weekly
When Sweeney Cassidy, a naive freshman at the University of the Archangels and St. John the Divine in Washington, D.C., falls in with the wrong crowd, she is expelled for taking part in a lurid escapade. But Hand (Icarus Descending) offers no usual tale of adolescent antics in this full-blooded gothic fantasy. The university is a haven of the Benandanti, who for millennia have guarded against the return of their ancient foe, Othiym Lunarsa, the Moon Goddess. In Hand's post-feminist tale, however, the goddess is not a comfortable earth mother figure but a powerful destroyer. The Benandanti are unaware that Sweeney's friends Oliver and Angelica are the Chosen Ones, whose violent coupling under the moon will begin to wake Othiym. Oliver kills himself, Angelica disappears and Sweeney is whisked away by the Benandanti. Twenty years later, Sweeney's summer intern at the National Museum of Natural History turns out to be the son of her old classmates, the result of that wild moonlit night. Young Dylan's mother has become Angelica Furiano, a New Age author with a large following of goddess worshippers. As Angelica's power grows, fed by the blood of young men, she is gradually becoming the goddess. But Sweeney, vowing to thwart the transformation, confronts Othiym in an apocalyptic showdown. Blending the ancient with the modern, the fantastic with the real, Hand has created a violently sensual fable helped by smart pacing and vibrant prose.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"A potent socio-erotic ghost story for our looming Millennium." -- -- William Gibson, author of Neuromancer and Virtual Light
"An extraordinary work--An ambitious, erotically charged thriller" -- -- Clive Barker, author of Everville
"Ms. Hand is a superior stylist." -- -- The New York Times Book Review
"The tropic lushness of Hand's descriptions are only one reward awaiting her reader." -- -- The Cleveland Plain Dealer
"A potent socio-erotic ghost story for our looming Millennium." -- William Gibson, author of Neuromancer and Virtual Light
"An extraordinary workAn ambitious, erotically charged thriller" -- Clive Barker, author of Everville
"Superior. An author worth watching, not to mention recommending." -- Booklist
"The tropic lushness of Hand's descriptions are only one reward awaiting her reader." -- The Cleveland Plain Dealer --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
Sorry, but this is one of the worst-written books I've ever tried to read -- awkward, obvious, graceless. The sense of mystery generated by the synopsis and cover blurbs is destroyed by two or three pages in, when all the relevant signposts are all-too-clearly laid in place: startling, ubiquitous angelic statuary? Check. Centuries-old buildings hidden behind trees? Check. Archaeological expert wearing jewelry with unexplained missing piece? Check. Ancient order observing mystical signs? Check. And that's by, oh, page seven? What happened to leading readers, let alone characters, into your dark designs in an intruiging way? It certainly isn't something which, judging by this book (and in fairness, it's the only one of Ms. Hand's I've seen) the author is capable of. Even the title tells you exactly what's going to happen. Humbug.
My only single complaint, like someone else mentioned, would have to be the author's use of a number of old English or historical words and phrases that I found myself looking up in a dictionary sometimes to fully grasp the meaning of a particular passage. (Often after reading through a few paragraphs, I could often get a general idea of what a particular word meant, but sometimes, the meaning was totally lost on me without looking it up.) That said, I *am* an educated individual, just not very strong in historical subjects. But in a way, I felt I got a neat little history lesson review in that regard. :)
I would have liked this book more if Hand had not described everyone's outfits and faces in such mind-numbing ways. Many pages of this book leave you bored, bored, bored! Read this if you go more for style over substance.
Mixed in with this hypnotically written story is a political battle between the Matriarchy (represented by Angelica) and the Patriarchy (the secret society); between the Goddess and the world that has ignored her for millennia. One of the best touches of Hand's book is that she doesn't really take sides, except maybe to hint that the fault of both philosophies is the extremes they go to. Even when Sweeney makes her decision at the end, she makes it for personal reasons and not because she agrees with either side. This was the book that got me investigating Goddess mythology several years ago, and it's also a fever-dream of a story, with a sympathetic heroine and a unique style. I've read it a gazillion times.
Most recent customer reviews
Elizabeth Hand is a truly wicked author. If you learn about the ancient cults worshipping Attis and Adonis, your interpretation of what happened at the end may be reversed 180... Read morePublished on Jan. 7 2003 by Peter W. Shor
Although I first read this book years ago, I find myself compelled to reread parts of it from time to time. It is a powerful book, and vivid in my memory. Read morePublished on Aug. 22 2002
I love this novel. Read it! I discovered it by accident in a supermarket a few years ago and haven't forgotten it. Read morePublished on June 22 2002 by Amy Hamilton Stewart
A great Read! Blood sacrifice, Feminine cults, moon worship--whooee! Ms Hand has done her homework--the book is VERY convincing, and a sexy, thrilling ride. Read morePublished on Jan. 31 2002 by Tom Mula
I dont know what I was expecting when I purchased this book, but I did not get it. The writing itself was passable, however there was no story. Read morePublished on Jan. 22 2002
I purchased this book by mistake. I got Hand mixed up with another author. What a lucky accident for me! I loved this book. Read morePublished on Aug. 29 2001
A friend of mine told me to read this book, that it was one of her favorites. She went on to say that it was "You know, secret societies, witchcraft and Minoan things. Read morePublished on Aug. 6 2001