Our Lady of the Islands was a real breath of fresh air. Two central protagonists, both female and both middle-aged and these two women wrestle with th..Show More »e common problems of many of us in the middle while engaged in an enthralling fantasy adventure. Sian Katte is a successful business woman with grown children and grandchildren; Arian is the wife of the Factor (leader of the Islands Nation, Alizar). Sian is thrust into a mission for the butchered god which leads her to cross paths with Arian. The two women not only must deal with political and religious factions that stand in the way of their goals, but also deal with all the same issues that most of us in the middle years grapple with:
When passion dies down, will friendship and respect sustain the marriage commitment? Evolving relationships with adult children Juggling professional and personal priorities What do I want to do with the rest of my life? What is my purpose? Evolving relationships with adult siblings and other family members
Unlike so many fantasy novels, this is not a coming of age story and there is little romantic angst or impetuous or petulant behavior. The emotional conflict in the book is primarily the reassessment of spiritual, emotional, physical, and professional issues that most middle-aged people have to tackle. What makes the book rock, is that these women are going through their mid-life crises in the middle of a world in turmoil and while on the run so there is truly never a dull moment.
The prose in Our Lady is fluid, dialog rings true, and all the characters, male and female, are well drawn and believable. Allyson Johnson provides a good performance as the narrator.
Jay Lake died of cancer while working on this book with Shannon Page. I read that Shannon Page is continuing the sequel with another collaborator. Our Lady of the Islands stands well enough on its own, but I enjoyed it so much that I am looking forward to more.