"A brilliantly written story of relationships and self-discovery"
Titled after one of the manifestations of the goddess
Juno, "Juno who brings light", JUNO LUCINA tells the story
of a woman's rediscovery of herself and acceptance of who
that person is. Tess Chromain is at a low point of her
life. Her husband, Alan died two years earlier in a gallant
but ill-fated attempt to prevent an assault by two men on a
woman. Since then she has lost interest in her job of
writing for the local newspaper as well as almost
everything else. Then her editor assigns her to a new
project. She is to write an article about a group of woman
moon-worshipers. Through her investigation, Tess starts
facing who she is. Sarah, Tess's mother and Tess are
sensitives; they can foresee events or at least get a "very
bad feeling" at times before something happens. This is
something that Tess has hidden from most of her life.
As she delves into the past, Tess must accept some truths.
Her relationship with her husband wasn't the most
fulfilling thing ever and her mother wasn't completely at
fault in her father abandoning them. Throughout the book
are relationships in one stage or another of change; an
abused neighbor finally leaves her husband, a childhood
friend learns she is about to become a first time mother.
When Jeff, a friend of her husband, returns from abroad,
they discover there is more than a little spark between
them, but it is hard for a new relationship to begin when
she hasn't quite made peace with the past.
Various religions and paths to enlightenment are discussed,
including Judaism and Wicca; all in a non-judgmental way
that I found refreshing. The book is brilliantly written,
with very strong characterization, description of place,
and wonderful dialog. At first I thought it was British due
to the dialect and style of the writing, but discovered
that the story actually takes place in a small city in New
Zealand. This leads to my only real complaint. The author
knew well where her story was set but never told reader. I
would have loved to know where some of the places she was
describing were while reading about them. Still, that is a
minor nit-pick for a book this good. I have no trouble
recommending JUNO LUCINA.
PNR Reviews © Copyright July 2002
Reviewed by Janet Miller
Reviewed by Janet Miller
Posted July 14, 2002
Her mother is a psychic artist, driven near to breaking point by a husband bent on conformity and control. The ugly childhood scenes have burrowed into Tess’s mind and festered there. Buried, too, are Tess’s own fledgling artistic and psychic abilities – unwanted ‘proof’ of the same inherent evil that has destroyed her family and stalked her dreams into adulthood. Tess flees into the safety of a teenage marriage, not realizing that the price of safety is her sense of self. When her husband, Alan, is tragically killed, the anger and dissatisfaction boil over and threaten to consume her. Sent upon a reluctant journey into the world of full moon rituals, witchcraft and unexpected violence, Tess is finally forced to confront the ‘wolf’ of her nightmares. She must learn anew to trust – her mother, her psychic instincts, and also Jeff, an unheralded admirer from her past.