‘Accursed Women’ by Luciana Cavallaro – A Book Review

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I’m sure Mistress Mythology, Luciana Cavallaro, has ancient Greek blood flowing in her veins. Her knowledge of the Greek Classics is already legendary on social media; that’s how I discovered her. She can make readers believe that she knew the goddesses she writes about, intimately and personally.

Accursed Women contains five legends in one volume, and is one of my favourite and treasured books:

 

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Luciana Cavallaro, who is a Perth teacher and historian, is adept at weaving ageless legends within a modern motif. Therefore her short stories are easy to read and allow us to see the ‘goddess’ in all women. Not only their feminine beauty and charm, but especially their jealousies, vindictiveness and intrigues. Have  we women all been cursed with these attributes and human weaknesses, one may well ask?

For instance, we all love Athene, the goddess known for her wisdom, courage, law and justice, just warfare, among many others. But she could also be heartless and capricious. It’s possible that Athene, the avowed virgin, was one of the earliest models for Christianity’s Virgin Mary. She was the chief priestess and protectress of the Temple built to honour the gods.

It was she, Athene, who welcomed the beautiful virgin sisters Medousa, Sthenno, and Euryale as priestesses into the safety of the Temple. They were in danger following Zeus’ declaration of war on the old gods. The three sisters were vivacious and competitive in all things, no different to the sibling rivalry we see in modern families. But when Medousa was raped by Poseidon in the Temple, everything changed for the sisters.  Poseidon sought revenge on an innocent girl. How dare the people of Athens choose Athene as their patron over he who had offered the precious gift of water. The goddess had merely offered the olive tree.  And wasn’t he, Poseidon, the most powerful god after Zeus? Through no fault of her own, Medousa, along with her sisters, were cruelly ejected from the Temple by Athene because of Medousa’s lost virtue. The ensuing horrors visited upon Medousa, which turned her into one of the Gorgones, are truly blood curdling.

Medousa the Gorgone

Medousa the Gorgone

The author mixes the chronology of events in Medousa’s story, Cursed By Treachery, which works well in highlighting the anger and power of ancient gods, and the vulnerability of their accursed female offspring caught in the throes of war and vengeance. Available here in e book format via AMAZON

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-Book Review Accursed Women by Anne Frandi-Coory 30 December 2013

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Mistress Mythology, Luciana Cavallaro

I have listed below links to previous reviews I have written for each of the other four stories included in the anthology – Anne Frandi-Coory

Accursed Women by Luciana Cavallaro:

Cursed by Treachery (Medousa’s story above) 

Aphrodite’s Curse

The Curse Of Troy; Helen’s Story

A Goddess’ Curse

Boxed In A Curse

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Published in March 2015 

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BOOK REVIEW for Search For The Golden Serpent

https://frandi.wordpress.com/2015/03/02/search-for-the-golden-serpent/

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ACCURSED WOMEN BOOK TRAILER:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTZVsoFkZPo&feature=youtu.be

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