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Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Brightest Heaven by Masha Holl

The Brightest Heaven by Masha Holl
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary; Paranormal
Length: Short story
Heat: Sensual
Rating: 4.5 books
Reviewed by Snapdragon

Urania, muse of Astronomy, is disconsolate: technology flourishes, but true creativity seems lost. Then she meets Daniel Kettering, an astrophysicist who shines with inspiration. But he's about to make a discovery which will threaten time, space, and every existing world.

The Olympians order Urania to carry an ultimatum for Daniel: forget your research and get eternal life. Or else. But first, Urania and Daniel have to figure out who stole Daniel's research, save the universe, and defeat Chaos; and maybe find happiness.  

Masha Holl’s “The Brightest Heaven” offers us a view of Romanesque view of the contemporary world. It is a recognizable 9-to-5 sort of place, with all the academic underpinnings of a college town life--but the gods and goddesses of the old still sit in judgment, and don’t always approve of what they find.

Even when gorgeous goddess Urania finds something she does like, it doesn’t mean things will go her way! Creativity, inspiration – she, as one of the muses of the arts, appreciates these in humans, but modern humans have become cold, disinterested in nature, and unimaginative.

Daniel Kettering is completely outside her imagining, though, and outside her easy ability to predict. He thunders in to confront a sea teeming in reality and illusion. He is more than she hoped for in this cold, oblivious world. She is far outside his experience, or his well-disciplined mind. However; he is outside of hers, as well. The personal qualities given even the higher beings here make all the characters very human.

Urania contrives what seems a magical meeting, a meeting indeed made to unveil the theories of the stars themselves; but a certain level of recognition turns to something more like confrontation. The unexpected becomes the norm, as the life of handsome Daniel Kettering, and his clever daughter Zoe are forever changed. And, the life of one Olympic goddess shall not remain untouched, either.

“The Brightest Heaven” is beautifully written and entirely unpredictable. Dialogue is snappy and believable. Modern life interweaves with mythological characters as if perfectly naturally; as if indeed, space and time wove them together.

Warm, heartfelt characters bring this highly imaginative romp through space and time to life.