Eyes in the Fire

Deborah Grabien, Author St. Martin's Press $15.95 (250p) ISBN 978-0-312-03336-1
Grabien's first novel is a compelling, darkly mystical tale of two vastly different women locked in a life-and-death struggle. They are Marian Dunne, an upper-middle-class matron who lives in a small Georgian manor house near Dartmoor; and Lunica, a young woman of the Dumnonii, a Celtic people who lived on the moor 2000 years ago. Lunica hungers for power in her male-dominated society, and she invokes the gods to give it to her. Somehow, through a hole in the fabric of time, she makes contact with Marian, whom she thinks is a goddess. For Marian, the realization that something strange is happening is not frightening at first, just disturbing: a mysterious smoke only she can smell; a dream that worries her husband Julian. Her fear escalates when a friend is killed--``sacrificed,'' as she intuitively knows--during an unnaturally fierce storm on the moor. As Lunica's power grows, she slowly possesses Marian, and Julian must fight to save her, body and soul. Grabien vividly brings the Dumnonii to life, creating a fascinating character in Lunica. Though the climax is somewhat of a letdown, this perfectly controlled, adroitly phrased tale is a terrific debut. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
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