Lisa Gordon, Janus Publishing Company £8.95
Reviewed by Richard Llewellyn
This novel is a thriller, which is written by an astrologer and which poses the question as to whether or not we have free will in our life or, at the end of the day, are we the victims of fate? So, yes, there is an astrological theme. ‘A Sealed Fate’ tells the story of Valda, a young woman going through an existential crisis, who takes off for a new life in Dubai in the hope of forgetting a failed relationship.
She finds success as a singer in a night club and through this becomes involved with a wealthy Sheikh who offers her material riches but in exchange she finds herself drawn into his violent underworld and his need to satisfy a drug addiction. Why her repeat drug runs don’t appear to raise any eyebrows with authorities either in South Africa, her home country, or in Dubai, is a little strange. However it doesn’t but Valda becomes concerned with the way her life appears to be heading and decides to consult Larissa, another ex-pat who is a practicing astrologer. After a consultation an immediate friendship is formed between the two women and Larissa warns Valda of the dangers into which she is being drawn. Does she take any notice, or is she on a path which would appear to have an inevitably tragic ending?
When I started this book it seemed to be light holiday reading but as I read on the suspense tightened and I found I was reading a really good thriller. However, like a roller coaster, no sooner had it gone up than it had to come down. For me the ending was confused and an unlikely situation unfolded where one of the women, who together had somehow become soul mates even though they were astrologer and client and only had occasional meetings, sacrificed herself in an unreal manner in order to save the other. And then, just when you think all is well that ends well, however unlikely, tragedy strikes in order to fulfil the prognosis forecast by Larissa.
The social side of life in Dubai and its colourful surroundings are well described in the book and whilst the ending may appear rather bizarre for some readers others will no doubt find the book entertaining reading whether on holiday or not. I hope that Lisa Gordon’s skills as a writer go from strength to strength and future books are able to bring the serious side of astrology to a wider audience.
About the author: Lisa Gordon completed the Faculty of Astrological Studies Certificate in 1999 achieving two A's and two Distinctions. She continued independently to research and study astrology and became the resident Astrologer on BBC WM in 2001 and later on BBC Shropshire, Hereford, and Worcester. She also writes the horoscopes for Asian Woman Magazine (under the name Lisa Lazuli) and has a BSc Industrial Economics Hons. (Warwick).