Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Foretelling by Alice Hoffman

The ForetellingFrom the book:
Rain is a girl with a certain destiny, living in an ancient time of blood, raised on mares' milk, nurtured with the strength of a thousand Amazon sisters. A girl of power, stronger than fifty men, she rides her white horse as fierce as a demon. Rain~ Dream Rider, born warrior, and queen-to-be.
In truth, Rain tastes a different future in her dreams. She is touched by the stirrings of emotions unknown. She begins to see beyond a life of war... and wonders about the forbidden. And about the words that are never used... Mercy. Men. Love. Peace.
 The first words: "I was born out of sorrow, so my mother named me Rain." 

This sets the book up for a short and lyrical coming of age story through the eyes of Rain as one of the legendary Amazon sisters. Rain's birth was anything but joyous because it was born out of gang rape, so her mother shunned her. As she grows she learns everything she can about life of the Amazons. For knowledge is power and she much know how the whole society runs. She excels in horse training and riding and becomes as her grandmother, a true sister of the horse. Because she is a queen-to-be and also because her mother shuns her, she is set apart and often travels alone. These adventures with the advice from one of their most wise and psychic priestesses, Deborah, help her to see that what is beyond their borders is not all evil. Not all to be shunned. This becomes the beginning of her quest to becoming her true self, including her questions about if she wants to even be queen.

I think this book is a quick and interesting fictional look into a culture that did exist many moons ago (hey, got to get into character here). However, it really is a look at one girl's life as she questions and learns and grows into her own wisdom and seeks the courage to become what she should become. There are references of rape, and sex, but it is not done in a graphic way and dealt with in a way that would make sense at that time. I give this book 3 1/2 stars.

Loved this quote from the book: "The weak are cruel: the strong have no need to be."

3 comments:

  1. I am passionately interested in legendary and historical Amazons right now. I had not idea this book was about that - going on my list.

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  2. I got this book at Big Lots! :)

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  3. I haven't read an Alice Hoffman book in a while and her recent public rant against a book reviewer has kind of turned me off her as well, but this book sounds really good. I really enjoy books about women warriors and I think I'll have to give this one a try, despite me feelings about the author. Great review!

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