By Marion Zimmer Bradley
Bills itself on the cover as: A Zodiac Gothic. With a horoscope by Sydney Omarr.
1976, paperback from Ballantine Books in NY.

Reviewed by Bob Corbett


It a wild and silly story of an old estate in Haiti with a curse on it since the killing of the French owner during the Revolution. A movie crew comes to live there and make a film of Haiti, and several of the cast turn out to either be reincarnated folks who lived in that earlier period, or all possessed and in some magic way, and the crew relives the last days of the French guy's life to get rid of the curse on the estate.

As I say, it was a wildly inaccurate and trashy novel, but a fun story too.

My favorite part was when a newspaper reporter came to call on the female lead. He arrived at the estate which is some distance from Port-au-Prince in an area without any roads. He came on a day in the pouring rain and was delayed by the rains and mud. But, he arrives at about 11 A.M. Then they decide to return to Port-au-Prince to shop!!!!!! But, there will be a formal dinner at the estate that evening so they must return. I was incredulous. I've ridden the 60 or so miles to Hinche many many times and have seen that trip take 6 hours or more in good weather!

But, the hilarity had not yet begun. They get back to Port-au-Prince, and do a bunch of shopping for clothes for the woman. Then the newspaper reporter says, let me show you my favorite place and they DRIVE UP TO THE CITADELLE!!!!! After this he takes her to a hideaway for "a very late lunch." Then, after this late lunch, they go to the Iron Market for an hour or so of shopping and return to the estate far into the countryside -- where, they will have to have drinks for a while since dinner will not be served until later "in the continental style."

I couldn't stop giggling. I was wondering if I could actually achieve all that in a week and not be totally exhausted. Ah, historical accuracy in fiction -- a wonder.

Bob Corbett


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Bob Corbett corbetre@webster.edu