Molly's Reviews

Rusalka MoonRusalka Moon
Cenizas de Rosas
XC Publishing

Entertaining read, Recommended

Ivan Askastoft a scholar from the city has come to the modest thorp of Paraska on his summer's journey to gather folk tales from small villages . As he sits with an elderly crone he learns of a love story that cannot be broken.

Long ago friends Yuri, Polya and Vasily decide to leave home, family and village to go fight with the army of the Czar. When Vasily leaves Paraska he leaves not only his parents behind but also the girl who dreams of marriage with him. After three years Valasha succumbs to the wooing of the Vodany who dwells in the river. The Vodany has plans for Valasha's immortal soul as Vasily wanders for a time in a Faery world when the fighting is over.

This time the Vodany has gone too far and the Lady of the Forest is forced to step in. The ancient crone who tells the story knows it is true, she is the widow of Valasha's brother Mikhail.

Writer de Rosas has woven a spellbinding tale with her first offering: Rusalka Moon. The reader is caught up in the tale right from the outset as we sit with Ivan and listen to Koshka talk of her sister in law and how it was.

The characters are well developed, credible and acceptable actors who interact with one another in believable fashion. Dialogue between the various characters flows well even though it is at times gritty, hard hitting and pungent. Valasha's plight is one we can really become caught up in right from the outset.

In Rusalka Moon deft writer De Rosas presents a nicely woven little narrative on the order of folk tales of old. Interwoven throughout the chronicle are bits and pieces of old Russian muse. We are offered a peek inside the daily lives of common folks who are caught up in situations they cannot change or hope to cope with on a substantive level. There is just enough of 'the other world' to give us a real feel for 'maybe, just maybe' they are out there.

Altogether Rusalka Moon is a satisfying read.

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2005 by Molly Martin