In this third installment, Mackey (The Year of the Horses; The Horses at the Gate) continues to chronicle the life of her fifth-century heroine, Marrah, Queen of Shara and the matriarchal Motherpeople. Attention is shifted in this version from the adventures of Marrah and her nomadic lover, Stavan (of the bellicose patriarchal Hansi), to those of their children. The story opens with the kidnapping of Keru, Marrah's son, by her Hansi nemesis, Changar. The boy is spirited away and raised by Changar to live as a Hansi--the nomadic, bellicose, patriarchal enemies of the Motherpeople. When Luma, Keru's twin sister and Keshna, Keru's cousin, reach puberty, they make it their mission to train as warriors and bring Keru home. But their impetuous designs lead to danger that could cost all three of them their lives. In the end, it's Marrah's love and her skill as a visionary that save those she cares for most. While Mackey often seems too caught up in the feminist/New Age theories of late archeologist Marija Gimbutas, she still offers plenty of historical detail and a bountiful array of vibrant characters, drawn from two very diverse cultures. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/31/1998 Release date: 09/01/1998 Genre: Fiction
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