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Wraeththu Paperback – Bargain Price, October 15, 1993
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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About the Author
Her influences include myth, magic and ancient history and the foibles of human nature. She uses writing and fiction to bridge the gap between mundane reality and the unseen realms of imagination and magic. She strives to awaken perception of these inner realms and the unexplored territory of the human psyche.
Aside from writing, Storm runs the Lady of the Flame Iseum, a group affiliated to the Fellowship of Isis, and is known to conduct group members on tours of ancient sites in the English landscape, in her husband's beat up old army Land Rover. She is also a Reiki Master/Teacher, has recently set up her own publishing company, Immanion Press, to publish esoteric books, and teaches creative writing when she gets the time.
Neil Gaiman, author of the Sandman series, once said: 'Storm Constantine is a mythmaking, Gothic queen, whose lush tales are compulsive reading. Her stories are poetic, involving, delightful, and depraved. I wouldn't swap her for a dozen Anne Rices!'
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What was really disappoint was how central it was to 'male' homosexuality - women are basically nothing in this book. It makes me wonder if the author is a misogynistic. One thing I liked and wish Constantine had worked on more was the science and genetics portion. The evolution of a new species is intriguing and a nice touch. The development of the Wraeththu was quicker than one would honestly expect. The species is *completely* unrealistic which is too bad because Constantine could have made the reality of the book amazing. Given that this was written in the '80s it's not surprising.
First, mythoughts on who won't like it. Those who prefer fact-focused sci-fi (also called "hard" sci-fi)---stay away. This is a character story, at its heart a love story, and the science in it is vague and unspecific, if covered at all. The book is closer to fantasy, if it can be categorized at all. Those who prefer didactic or straightforward themes, action, or adventure---you'll be disappointed. The adventure in these books lies within the minds and
hearts of the protagonists, and while there are some harrowing moments, there aren't enough to satisfy the action fan. Those who prefer their speculative fiction firmly in the realm of "traditional" sci-fi---there are no aliens, no other worlds except in the spiritual sense, no postulations of the future based on anything in existence today. Lastly, those who can't handle the occult/"paganism"/non-Judeo-Christian notions about God and the spirit, and those who can't handle even the appearance of homosexuality or bisexuality, this is not the title for you.
Those who will enjoy it are a) the reverse of all of the above, b) anyone interested in the philosophies underlying the goth subculture, c) anyone interested in the evolution of culture and religion over time, and d) anyone who likes a good new-fangled love story.
Additional note---my experience has been (after sharing this book with many friends) that those who expect this book to be erotica, especially gay erotica, are largely disappointed. The "magic" in the book is based on the concept of tantric sex magic, but although sex is frequently depicted in the story, the author attempts to convey its emotional and spiritual power, not its purely physical sensations. A lesbian friend found it too "hetero" in its outlook---it's a metaphor for "alternative sexuality", and by that I don't simply mean gay sex. The whole traditional notion of sexuality between those of opposing and those of the same sex is played with---everything including power relationships, the concept of beauty, the essence of masculinity/femininity, and the kitchen sink is tossed around.
But never mind all that heavy stuff. Wraeththu is one of those books that reveals more and more layers of meaning as you read it, but on the surface it's just a really good, engrossing story. Even if you have the opportunity to get the 3 books individually, buy the omnibus edition. You won't want to wait to read the rest.
However because of the beauty of the 1st, 2nd and 1/2 of the 3rd book I still rate the complete story 5 stars. Glad that the 3 books are combined into one and I have orderd a copy for a friend because I just could not lend him my copies. To all would be readers : please do not be deterred by the 700 over pages of the 3 in 1 copy. Believe me it is a spellbinding read and made one wishful for more...