Cover image for Black wine
Black wine
Dorsey, Candas Jane.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Tor, 1997.
Physical Description:
285 pages ; 22 cm
General Note:
"A Tom Doherty Associates book."
Format :


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"Why is there an old woman, in a hanging cage for punishment, keeping a journal written in blood?" "Candas Jane Dorsey has written an ambitious, feminist novel about women coming to terms with their identity in a barbarous fantasy world." "Dorsey's women travel across the world, from the slave dens to the merchant cities, across seas by ship and by dirigible, to isolated mountain villages and back again." ""But there remains provocative ambiguity as the story progresses. There is a woman exiled from her family, a mother who has abandoned her daughter, an old woman in a cage, a young women slave on a lord's estate who does not remember her past. How many of them are the same woman?"--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Author Notes

Candas Jane Dorsey is a writer, editor, and publisher.

Dorsey was the president of the Writing Guild of Alberta, and editor of Edmonton Bullet, and one of the founding editors of the River Books imprint of the Books Collective of Edmonton. Dorsey is currently a member of the editorial advising committee for OnSpec SF magazine, and publisher of Tesseract Books, Canada's oldest speculative fiction imprint.

Various pieces of Dorsey's short fiction have been awarded the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Award for Best Short-Form Work in English. "Johnny Appleseed on the New World" was chosen for the Visions of Mars CD-ROM included aboard in the 1994 launch of the U. S.-Russian exploration.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

An acclaimed poet and short-story writer in her native Canada, Dorsey is almost unknown in the States. That should change with the publication of this novel, her first. The narrative braids the lives of three women who are linked by their independent spirits as well as by blood. One is "the waif," a young slave whose strange dreams and troubling half-memories hint at a past she can't remember. When the waif is sold as a concubine to a prince in the distant northern Land of the Dark Isles, she begins a journey that will lead her to the secret of her past as well as to her future. Weaving the waif's tale with that of Essa, an adventurous young woman determined to find her mother, and the journal entries of a woman escaping a husband she neither loves nor wants, Dorsey creates a complex and human story about freedom, love and the need to retain one's own identity. The fantasy setting is stark, a world where the most brutal events are treated with cold matter-of-factness, but Dorsey's writing is strong, even unflinching. Those who enjoy the work of such popular feminist speculative fiction writers as Joanna Russ and Ursula K. Le Guin will find much to admire here. (Jan.) FYI: Dorsey is head of Tesseract Books, a leading Canadian SF publisher. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

For her first fantasy novel, Dorsey features an old woman in a cage who writes her diary in blood and tells her story to a curious young girl. This journey of self-discovery and identity fits in the feminist tradition of Joanna Russ. Recommended for fantasy collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.