Friday, May 10, 2013

Venus of Shadows

1988, 1990 Bantam edition
Pamela Sargent
Venus of Shadows
Original price $4.95, purchase price $1.50
Falling apart paperback

I found this book about equal to its predecessor, although I was less drawn in.  Iris's very posthumous daughter Risa is more sympathetic a character, except when she forces her five-year-old daughter Chimene to witness the death penalty on a murderer and his accomplices.  This, along with her great beauty, apparently warps Chimene into growing up to be a deluded and deluding cult leader.  Risa's son Dyami is gay, which is unacceptable to Chimene's (hetero)sex cult.  There's a scene where a younger man that he once expressed sympathy to rapes him, as punishment for Dyami's and his own homosexuality.  I get Sargent's point but it's still disturbing, if less than it would be if I really believed in any of the characters.  Meanwhile, Benzi grows older but remains youthful, mostly offstage for 30 or 40 years. 

Sargent was then working on the final book in the trilogy, Child of Venus, but it wasn't published till 2001.  I've never read it, but apparently it's about Chimene's posthumous daughter.

No comments:

Post a Comment