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Reviews

Editorial Reviews

 

Peter S. Beagle author of The Last Unicorn, Tamsin and Two Hearts
“Maggie Schein’s stories are both charming and alarming (the rhyme is unintentional, but the sentiment deeply felt.) The only comparable writer I can think of is my old flame and model Isak Dinesen. Each of Schein’s tales has the taste of air charged with anticipation of an approaching storm. They are genuinely philosophical in a way which is very rare, frightening in a way far removed from scary, and, most impressively, they are often philosophically frightening–which is almost unheard of. I haven’t read anything remotely like them in a long time.”

John Grant, Hugo and World Fantasy Award-winning joint editor of The Encyclopedia of Fantasy
“Maggie Schein is a writer who wears her love of language on her sleeve. Her fables, told in dancing, almost musical prose, unveil myths that seem drawn from a time long before history began. Find a quiet place, sit back, and prepare to be dazzled.”

Marjory Wentworth, Poet
“The title, Lost Cantos of the Ouroboros Caves: Expanded Edition, suggests music and poetry, and the exquisite sentences that comprise this collection of fables are as lyrical as any nineteenth century romantic poet. There is also much wisdom in Maggie Schein’s stories, which are at once insightful and mystical and always filled with wonder.”

Ron Rash, American poet, short story writer and novelist
“Maggie Schein has written a book that takes us back to the primal, at times almost preconscious, beginnings of story, yet within her narratives we encounter the core of concerns that even now define our humanity. Lost Cantos of the Ouroboros Caves is a delight.”

Pat Conroy, author of The Prince of Tides, The Great Santini and The Water is Wide
“Maggie Schein writes like a fallen angel.”

Judy Goldman, author of Losing My Sister: A Memoir
About the Author and The Illustrator

“Maggie Schein is gifted. Her novel is so vividly imagined, so rich and evocative, so beautifully written, you’ll find yourself holding your breath in parts. I highly recommend this book.”

 

Reader Reviews

 

B. Grier on June 2, 2013
“This is a different sort of literature than you are accustomed to. Maggie Schein has created a new style unlike any others and has opened a whole new genre. It is rich in mystical stories regarding the quest of impatient seekers of truth, starting with an introduction to the seamstress who mends and maintains the seams of life. Along the way, the trials and travails of truth seekers, like the fool’s journey, are richly depicted with stories, and stories within stories as in “The Monk and The Orchid”. Like the ancient ouroboros, the central theme of the varied tales circles back around to drapery of life’s fabric. In between is a magical fusion of metaphysics, philosophy and nature.”It was a mind-opener for me, evoking astonishment similar to that experienced upon my first introduction to Salman Rushdie’s unique style. It is lyrical, melodic. Read it slowly and ponder her messages. Read it aloud and savor the music. The wonderment of the reading experience mirrored the characters’ perplexity, and like them, I felt enlightened at the end of the journey. There is a method to her madness.

It deserves much higher than four stars, as it shines alone as a trailblazer. Some sentences could have been a bit less complex. The stories could stand to be a little tighter. Or, maybe that is her design. The small amount of distraction may be analogous to diversions in life that keeps one’s quest interesting.

I am amazed that this is her first book. I am looking forward to her next publication which will surely be a masterpiece.

Donna Kirkpatrick
The book is spectacular. I think there will be people who will not truly appreciate this work. It might not be for everyone because they won’t allow it to be or are not ready for it or are simply ill-equipped for this type of book. Perhaps, some will have trouble with it because It is not something one should argue with or decide that particular choices of imagery are right or wrong; if the reader takes that path, then it will become an academic exercise in frustration. In any case, in my humble opinion, the book is spectacular. It is not light reading; it takes time and is ripe for new discoveries and illuminations with each read. If one approaches expecting to encounter simple fairy tales – well, hmmmm, not quite. I found I needed to read the book when I was rested and open. For me, that is the first thing in the morning when the world hasn’t stolen me away. Then I could open up and your words and world could enter me. If I tried to read the same pages at night, the words would bounce off me like hail on a trampoline. But in the morning they could slide in and be clear.

Once it is published, I have my copy, I am going to send it to my photography mentor George DeWolfe. He teaches contemplative photography and I think he and his students will love this book, particularly the story The Accidental Gods. I have a couple other people I want to give it to as well.

And, by the way, Jonathan Hannah’s illustration are also fantastic!

Jonathan on December 11, 2012
I can not begin to describe the intoxicating imagery and profound awakening the stories in “Lost Cantos of the Ouroboros Caves” create in one’s spirit. I will let those who are better with words do that.

Judy Goldman, author of Losing My Sister: A Memoir
“Maggie Schein is gifted. Her novel is so vividly imagined, so rich and evocative, so beautifully written, you’ll find yourself holding your breath in parts. I highly recommend this book.”

The book is a wondrous read.