A woman denying who she is finds herself on a path of self-discovery she never wanted to be on.
Winner of the International Book Award and Pinnacle Book Award for Visionary Fiction!
The Unholy is a dramatic story of Claire Sanchez, a young medicine woman, intent on discovering the closely-guarded secrets of her past. Forced into a life-and-death battle against an evil Archbishop, William Anarch, she confronts the dark side of religion and the horror of one man’s will to power.
“Hush now, child,” said a voice she recognized as that of her mother’s closest friend. “The man cannot harm you, mijita, as long as you are with us. We will make him think you are dead. But you must be very quiet. Ya no llores,” the woman warned, raising a finger to her lips.
The woman then carried her into a dark cave illuminated by the light of a single candle. The cave was frightening, with shadows of what appeared to be goblins and demons dancing on the red sandstone walls. “I will return for you soon. You will be safe here,” the woman said. The girl watched the woman walk away, shivering as a breeze blew through the cave’s narrow passages.
Closing her eyes, she rocked back and forth—imagining herself safe in her mother’s arms—then opened her eyes to the light of the full moon shining through the mouth of the cave. The shadows on the walls were just shadows now, no longer goblins and demons. As she slipped into a trance, images flickered in her mind. She saw the woman who had brought her to this place scattering pieces of raw meat around the open mesa where her mother had
struggled, helped by two other women the girl could not identify.
Suddenly, the scene shifted to a stone ledge jutting over the mesa, and she heard the pounding footsteps of a man running toward the women. The girl felt her heart race and her breathing quicken, afraid that the bad man would spot them and kill them. Then the image shifted again, and she now saw on the mesa three gray wolves circling the raw meat and the man walking away from the granite ledge. As he left, she heard his thought: The child is dead.
Paul DeBlassie III blends religious and Native American mythology in The Unholy. It all starts with death as the Excerpt above showcases and then DeBlassie moves the story forward 20 years and we meet Claire again as an adult helping those made helpless by their own demons. Claire has turned her back on her mythical heritage and instead focuses on the science of medicine.
In the meantime, DeBlassie tells the story of the Archbishop who funds the mental health facility where Claire works. We watch the two competing trains of thought on the past, present, and future and where self-delusion can land you.
The Unholy fits right into this Halloween season as it blends crows, scaly creatures, creepy religious figures, and of course murder.
I received an ARC of this book and I am writing a review without prejudice and voluntarily.
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Publisher: Sunstone Press, 9780865349599, 1 August 2013
Settings: Aztlan, U.S.
Promotion materials provided by Goddess Fish Promotions.
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3Book is available on Kindle Unlimited at time of posting
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