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Waters of the Dancing Sky by Janet Kay
Reviewed by Don Bacue, Executive Editor, International Features Syndicate
 

   Beth Calhoun is every woman’s inspiration...and nightmare.  Living in an elegant high rise overlooking Chicago’s Lake Michigan, she seems to have everything going for her.  And then her dream world bursts open at the seams.  Her abusive husband leaves her for another woman.  She has no job, no skills, no future.  Her daughter is gone, studying art in Europe. 

When her uncle calls to tell her that her grandmother is dying, images of her own mother’s mysterious death when Beth was only six dance in her head.  Her grandmother had taken her in and raised her, been her strength, provided her source of hope, happiness, and inspiration.

Now Nana, too, was being pulled from Beth’s life.

Rushing to her grandmother’s home on a lake set far into the Midwestern wilderness, she recognizes a hauntingly real need to delve into her life.  But where to begin?  Born illegitimately and abandoned by death as a child, she hasn’t a clue.  And then she finds an old trunk in the attic, filled with her mother’s diaries and poetry.  Will the secreted items she unveils in the dim must of the ancient room shed light on her past?  Will the clues that she pursues illuminate her future?

When she learns the truth about her father, she faces yet another dilemma: the man she thought was her happily married uncle is actually much more.  When Beth’s estranged husband arrives on the island to confess his repentance and convince his wife to return to Chicago with him, she realizes she can never face her life of old again.

Waters of the Dancing Sky is an elegantly told story filled with twists and turns, pain and tenderness, conflicts and resolution.  Touched by the spirits of Native Americans long since passed from this world, emboldened by the majesty and the magic of the North Woods that surround her, Beth learns at last to live life anew...to let go of the past and embrace the future, whatever it might bring.

“They scanned the horizon in silence.  Suddenly, a pair of pure white gulls circled overhead several times--then landed beside them.  Beth held her breath as her tears began to flow.  Letting herself go, she felt waves of love and peace flowing through her like a river with no beginning, no end.  The female gull stared into her eyes, mesmerizing her, as images of her mother flickered through her mind.

“Time seemed to stand still--until the gulls finally soared back up into the brilliant blue sky, into the universe of life.  Together at last.

“’The circle of life...’ Seth whispered as he pulled Beth into his arms.

“’Of love,’ she sighed, as long-forgotten images of other times, other places, began to flash seamlessly through her soul.  A river of lives cycling again and again.  ‘I’ve always loved you, haven’t I?’ she suddenly realized.

“’Always,’ his spirit answered hers.  ‘Always.’”

This is a book not of Beth Calhoun and her quest for peace, love, and enlightenment.  This is a book about the universality of life.  It is a book about the magic of the human spirit and the often wisp-like will of the human mind.  Highly recommended reading for lovers of life everywhere.

Waters of the Dancing Sky

by Janet Kay

Llumina Press

Paperback, $16.95

Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
 

Waters of the Dancing Sky

Reviewed by Laura Kasichke

"In Janet Kay's new novel, Waters of the Dancing Sky, a true communion of place, character, and plot takes place. This is a carefully constructed novel, lush in its evocation of a time and people. As in all the best fiction, there is not a word or detail here that could be removed and leave the rest intact. Waters of the Dancing Sky is a complete vision, one with reverberating depths and serious surprises." - Laura Kasichke, Author of The Life Before Her Eyes.

Waters of the Dancing Sky

Reviewed by Beverly Pechin

Reader Views

"Sometimes a novel comes along that weaves fiction, reality, desire and inspiration together into a beautifully bound escape into another world.  Waters of The Dancing Sky is one of those novels...The plot is intriguing. There's no question as to whether you delve in full strength as you watch the main character literally turn into a new person with a new life and self-identity, an amazing journey to take. Waters of the Dancing Sky by Janet Kay will keep you intrigued, inspired, and hopeful. The way the author intertwines reality with fiction simply leaves one to wonder if there aren't such beautiful possibilities out there for all of us." - Beverly Pechin

Waters of the Dancing Sky

Reviewed by Melissa Levine

Independent Professional Book Reviewers

Waters of the Dancing Sky is a complicated tale of brokenness and renewal. Author Janet Kay weaves together a story with themes of shame and violence, redemption and forgiveness, set in a beautiful, rural lake community...She does a wonderful job of bringing to life not only the landscape and structures around the Rainy Lake area, but she also paints amazing pictures of life on an island in this region... This is a wonderful story. The author creates a world that is a mix of longstanding pain and an amazing offering of nature's beauty. This story has the power to teach readers about the necessity of self-preservation, self-love, and the enduring care of family. Waters of the Dancing Sky is a brilliant tale of second chances and building a better, stronger life. I highly recommend it." - Melissa Levine
 

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