CIRCLES IN THE SKY is a tale of adventure, a love story, a journey of compelling drama, tragedy, passion and courage. The book begins at the end of CIRCLES OF STONE, the first novel in the Mother People Series, when the young Zena huddles alone and defenseless in a cave, knowing that her mother and most of the others in her tribe are dead. Though hardly more than a child, she understands that it is up to her, as the next Zena, to find a new home for her people and to keep the ways of the Mother alive - the ways of love and compassion and respect for the earth that sustain her people. The second Zena is an appealing heroine, a girl who lives in her mind as much as her body, but she also has a unique ability to combine common sense and imagination with mystical visions of the future that come to her from the Goddess. She finds many ingenious solutions to the challenges that face the small band of survivors as she leads them to a new home far from the violence. Entrapment by the men with knives and the difficulty of crossing a flooded river fail to stop her, but when she loses Lupo, the young wolf who has befriended her and given her confidence, Zena is bereft. All her new-found courage dissipates when she realizes that her beloved companion is gone. A near-fatal illness strikes, and only the mysterious appearance of an ancient and memorable healer saves her life, though she must bear life-long reminders of her illness. Other memorable characters abound in CIRCLES IN THE SKY: the old story teller who keeps the history of the Mother People alive; the crippled child who saves their lives, the young man whose chest is marked by a butterfly, symbolizing regeneration; the man who once killed his father in a fit of rage but who makes beautiful music on his bone flute, and the fiery young woman whose arguments about mating with the man who loves her disrupt the tribe’s stability. Zena watches the turmoil and is afraid, of the disruption within the tribe, of the men with knives who are still on their trail, of the fate of the small children who are mysteriously disappearing from Mother People tribes. But most of all, she fears a menace she cannot name hanging over them, a menace she knows she must face before the tribe can continue their journey to the new home she has envisioned surrounded by a great moving sea that has no end. There, they will finally be safe. Then, when Zena least expects it, when she is alone with no one to defend her, the unknown menace strikes in the form of a woman so embittered that she has become the embodiment of evil. The scene that follows as Zena confronts her nemesis will sear itself into your memory and tear at your heart, as wrenching and unforgettable as it is powerful. It is good and evil struggling for dominance, and all the advantages are on the wrong side. Even as her senses rebel, Zena knows she must do what has always seemed unthinkable in the eyes of the Goddess. The survival of the Mother People, as well as her own survival, are at stake.
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