||April 28, 2008
A mother daughter historical mystery set in Scotland and San Francisco during the mid 1950's to the early days of the 1960 Haight Ashbury days and the changing environs in one of San Francisco's famous neighborhoods, The Castro.
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The Skye in June, A Novel
The story begins in the back seat of a cab. Cathy MacDonald is on the way to the hospital to deliver, yet another bairn (child.)June MacDonald’s fate is sealed the day she is born when her mother, Cathy, defies her husband Jimmy by giving their new daughter a pagan name instead of a Catholic saint’s, as is their tradition. The decision forever sets the MacDonald family on a course for disaster, and no one can foresee that June will grow up to threaten their strong religious beliefs. When the MacDonald family emigrates from Scotland to San Francisco, California, young June has visions. They haunt Cathy, revealing her secret past in the Scottish Highlands. June’s religiously rigid and abusive father will not tolerate the visions. This doesn’t stop his feisty redheaded daughter from her interest and curiosity in psychic phenomena and witchcraft. The family is on the brink of imploding when June and her three sisters come of age in the early 1960’s. "Doomed to hell, every last one of you,” proclaims Jimmy whose four daughters seem to be abandoning Catholicism in favor of the Haight-Ashbury's sexual revolution and psychedelic lifestyle. In order to save June, Cathy must learn the power of spirit and take heed of June’s psychic messages before it’s too late.
"Doomed to Hell every last one of you!" yelled Jimmy MacDonald.
His wife, Cathy, watched with great sadness as he destroyed the power of their daughters. Little by little, each girl waned and ebbed, until in exhaustion, they became their father's prophecy. Cathy thought of Annie, and wondered if he would ever stretch beyond her father's constraints that ended her dreams of going to college.
San Francisco Novelist
Not since author Amy Tan's early writings has a woman's voice so strongly resonated from one of San Francisco's most famous neighborhoods. Author June Ahern's powerful coming of age tale, “The Skye in June”, is the evolution of a young psychic and her passage through a unique time and place-–a must read for anyone interested in the drama and complexities of what it might be like growing up psychic. Jim Toland, author of Fog and Fire.
Very Highly Recommended
This story is set both in Scotland and San Francisco and is about the adventures of a Scottish family who move to USA to change their life. The story unfolds in Glasgow, the authors birthplace, where the MacDonald family live. The author is very skillful at her descriptions of the setting and the Scottish culture, thus making this novel vivid and real. The family faces misery and tragedy and as a result they decide to move to USA to have a try. How successful will they be in their quest for happiness? Can the secrets of the past let them enjoy life?
From the start of the story the main character, June, seems to attract everyone s attention as she is a special child with a unique charisma; she is a fey as her mother, Cathy, says. Readers can learn a lot about Scottish language and culture and this novel is certainly a work of art on these issues. The author addresses several issues of importance such as religion, with an emphasis on Catholicism, paganism and witchcraft. They all have their own explanation and meaning in this story. It is also interesting to see how the author treats the issue of child abuse throughout the plot. June and her sisters are physically and verbally abused both at home and at school and this is relevant to our times as well.
This novel is a wonderful story of a woman s journey in life and shows the impact she has on her daughters, especially on the youngest one. The colloquialism throughout the story adds to the plot and the ample cultural aspects enrich the story. There is an optimistic ending where problems are resolved and family members learn to be open- minded and adapt to new life conditions, accept reality and keep love for one another. The content is spiritual, the characters are real life facing real problems and the whole story revolves around family bonds and relationships and the way they have evolved. It is an exciting read that grips the readers attention from the start to the very last pages. It caters to everyone loving family stories and mystery and learning about the Scottish culture and the spiritual world. It is worth reading it and a great gift for all book lovers. - Liana Metal
We need more J. Ahern’s in this world…smart, irreverent, sassy and deeply dedicated to her wisdom and the natural encouragement of intuition in all children. Her fictional novel portrays her understanding of the psychic world woven around a magical mystery.” - Litany Burns, Clairvoyant/Medium and author of "The Sixth Sense of Children" and "Develop Your Psychic Abilities."
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