Thursday, April 12, 2012

Five Dances With Death, Dance One

Austin Briggs has written a good historical/supernatural book about the Aztecs of Mexico. The book begins in 1516. It also relates to the Spaniards as well as the Mayans, Olmec and Toltecs, people of Mexico. The "outlanders" are the Spanish who came in ships. The Aztec Empire is called "One World".
Angry Wasp is searching for his daughter, Dew, who was captured by his enemy, Talon. The beginning of the book has Angry Wasp and Talon at the ballcourt for the game to get Dew back . I have seen the ballcourt at Chichen Itza and was told there were sacrifices for the losers.
There is gore but anyone who has studied these cultures will not be surprised at the violence. The names in the book have somewhat been changed because they are hard to read; for me, I did not have much of a problem. I am glad I have studied the Maya, and also taught school children about them, and I have studied the Aztec somewhat, because it made the book more interesting and easier to read. Many of the words and happenings were familiar to me. The language of the Aztec was Nahuatl. I recommend the readers copy the Notes at the beginning of the Five Dances With Death which has a Quick Pronunciation Guide, Names of Places and Tribes, Historical Names and Gods so when they read they will have as good guide. I would have liked a map to help locate the area.
This is a supernatural book and Broken Plume, wife of Wasp, is a sorceress from Blue Cloak Mountain. She sends Wasp into the Void where he becomes a "twin" of himself where he can have a out of body experience. Plume has warned him not to go too far.
There are a number of characters and they all blend together, Wasp has his father, his wives and children as well as other leaders form other clans. The book begins with the search for Dew but somehow she is not the main part of the story. The book is fast track and there are many twists and turns. The language is fine and no sexual portions.
List of some characters are: Angry Wasp, his father Angry Wasp the Elder, His first wife Broken Plume, Talon, his enemy, Stern Lord ( Montezuma) who was leader and ruler of the Moonnwalk People and One Grass of Sacrifice, a young woman. Some gods are Feathered Serpent (Quetzalocotal), God of Rain (Tlaloc), and Smoking Mirror (Tezcatlipocal).
This is the first book of a series and the end of the book will leave you wanting to see the next "chapter".
I give it a five star. There is a quality of writing and I did not find any typos. Five Dances With Death is in the first person with Angry wasp as the person; I think it helped make the book personal. I will recommend this to my local library because they have recently acquired the option of e-books for the patrons.
The reader will learn something about the ancient cultures of Mexico.

1 comment:

Harvee said...

Sounds like a good book to learn about the ancient Mexican cultures, plus a good story.