Centuries of June by Keith Donohue. Although Mr. Donohue has published two other novels, The Stolen Child and Angels of Destruction, I was not familiar with him. I am always thrilled and excited to read new authors so I readily accepted.
It is difficult in this age of instant gratification and self publishing to find original and intriguing stories. You know how it is you pick up a book and start reading an instantly know you have read this story before except instead of Miami it was set in Milan and instead of the protagonist being Joe its Juan. Oh honestly I don’t blame the authors, especially if they are avid readers, it’s just a natural progress to begin incorporating other stories within your own. Not so with this story. He did incorporate other stories but he made them his own by entwining them into his own tale.
I began reading Centuries of June by Keith Donohue and immediately the movie began playing in my mind. I love it when an author can create a story so vivid I loose all sense of space and time and this is exactly what Mr. Donohue accomplished I had instantly cast each player as they appeared and I could see in my mind’s eye the whole scene play out.
A young man struck in the head and the 7 women who visit him through his stupefied state. The old man who protected and helped him through the journeys of his mind and who and what was he really? Each visit opened more questions with little resolve, each ghostly and beautiful visitor adding to the mystery as well as the question as to why our main character was bludgeoned in his own bathroom. The more you read the more you try to decipher who the old man is and why is he there, why are these women all trying to kill our poor architect and who is the woman asleep in the bed facing the wall.
Mr. Donohue’s writing style kept me turning the page and his story kept me enthralled. His dark humor and storytelling abilities kept me on the edge of my seat waiting for the punch-line. He took me into that cold tiled bathroom and then carried me from primeval forests of the pacific northwest through the gold rush and on into the early 20th century reminding me of the pain and suffering women have lived through to give me the freedoms I have today. More importantly he told the story of the man’s own insecurity and strife.
I thoroughly enjoyed my romp through the centuries with Mr. Donohue and his rough and primal ghosts. I highly recommend this to those with an adventurous spirit and an open mind. Oh and I have taken to looking behind me when I enter the bath.