Not only must she now come to terms with her new existence in the body of a disagreeable man, and clean up the mess he made of his life, she also has to unravel the mystery of why House Adamastor's chapter house is standing empty and find a way to protect a dangerous secret she had no idea she was supposed to keep. As if fate couldn't deal her another blow, she has also attracted the attention of a malicious and potentially dangerous ghost. And to top it all off, she must deal with the consequences of finding love in a most unexpected place.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.66(d)|
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Lizzie, or Nefretkheperi, is an inkarna, a person whose spirit can knowingly return from the dead to inhabit another body. Dying in 1966, she is meant to return in 2007 to take over the body of three-year-old Catherine van Vuuren. Instead she finds herself waking to life in the body of Ashton Kennedy, five years later. Kennedy is not a very nice fellow. Elizabeth finds that he has a lot of enemies and a steady girlfriend. She also finds that the South Africa she left behind has changed a lot. She handles the changes almost too well, which is a weakness in the novel. She also finds that there are intrigues that she has to handle and occult war that she has to fight, both with the shade that she has displaced, and with a rival occult house. In the process she also has to deal with past love and rivalry and present love. It's a well-told tale, by a novelist whose skill is developing, and who manages here to straddle dark fantasy and romance with real ease.
Danger and Intrigue on the Dark Continent. Great literary first lines come in all shapes and sizes. Some are short and classic: Melville’s “Call me Ishmael.” in Moby Dick. Others are more recent and longer: “I am doomed to remember a boy with a wrecked voice – not because of his voice, or because he was the smallest person I ever knew, or even because he was the instrument of my mother’s death, but because he is the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany.” from John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany. The best are a little edgy: Hunter S. Thompson in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – “We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold.” Regardless of their size and shape, though, great first lines all get a firm grip and pull the reader straight into the story. For some reason, most of my favorites are in the first person. I’ve recently added Inkarna’s – “Tomorrow will be the first time I die.” – to my list of favorite first lines. Visiting Maitland Cemetery on the eve of her death, Elizabeth Rae Perry – Lizzie – recalls the nearly nine decades of her life and wonders with more than a little apprehension what’s in store for her beyond the Black Gate. Forty-six years later, Lizzie is reincarnated in the body of Ashton Kennedy, a man who’s been in a coma for four months following a hit and run “accident.” Lizzie is confused and disoriented, but she knows something has gone horribly wrong. She was supposed to have reincarnated five years earlier in a little girl who had drowned. Unable to change her circumstances, she begins trying to adjust to them while figuring out what went wrong. Her most immediate problem is getting used to being in a man’s body. Having always been a woman, she must deal with this man’s very rough nature and past…not to mention, “parts” that are completely new to her. Then there’s Ashton’s girlfriend, Marlise, who’s been at his bedside almost constantly for the past four months. When Lizzie leaves the hospital, she quickly discovers how big an ass Ashton was before he was run over by an SUV. She tries to clean up the messes he’s created while figuring out what her current role is in the world of the Inkarna – an ancient Egyptian cult. The more she learns, the more uncertain she is that she’ll be able to keep herself – much less Marlise – alive. Inkarna is told in the first person present by Lizzie. Sometimes the feel is that of someone telling her life story. Other times she’s grabbing your hand, pulling you through the danger with her. This is a very dark story with respect to both content and environment. Dorman establishes that darkness early and maintains it throughout. She seamlessly transitions Lizzie’s initial confusion and abhorrence at being in a man’s body to her acceptance of it. Dorman is from South Africa, and her writing reflects that. Her idioms, syntax, and so forth are occasionally strange to an American ear, but not enough so to distract from the story or the flow of her writing. There is some explanation of the Egyptian mythology associated with the Inkarna but it’s very general and fairly sparse. For those who like to end their reading sessions at the end of chapters, be prepared to read for quite some time. I didn’t actually count, but some of the chapters were probably in the fifty to seventy page range, and could have easily been broken into several chapters. The end of the story was not a happily-ever-after ending – well, not entirely anyway. It wasn’t even neatly tied up, but that’s okay. The ending fits the nature and feel of the story very well. For those who like dark tales, fantasy, Egyptian mythology, some romance, or even just a good action/mystery, Inkarna is a must read.
Inkarna is, by far, the best book I've read this year. Ashton Kennedy is hot and bad and one of those characters you love to hate or hate to love, either way. Nerine Dorman transfixes the reader with a believable story steeped in Egyptian mysticism and what it means to be Inkarna. When Lizzie's plan to inhabit the body of a three year old girl goes awry and she wakes up in the body of Ashton, we are taken on a gender bending journey where she acclimates to being Ash and battles her/his feelings toward Ash's timid girlfriend. Through Lizzie, Ash is able to redeem his past misdeeds and through Ash, Lizzie is able to set things right with Inkarna. This book will keep you on the edge of your seat with magic and mystery. The ending is breathtaking and will leave you yearning for more.