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Reed Stirling lives in Cowichan Bay, BC, and writes when he is not painting landscapes or travelling or hanging out at The Drumroaster in Cobble Hill, a popular local café where metaphor and metaphysics clash daily. He is presently completing work on a novel set in Montreal. His shorter fiction has appeared in a variety of venues, both online and in hard copy, among which The Nashwaak Review, Fickle Muses, Filling Station, Fictuary, and  StepAway Magazine

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 Reed Stirling in situ recording the words of Steven Spire who has just begun his quest:

            “I struggle most when Hydra headed truth arouses itself and insists on being beautiful.”\\

 

 

 

 

 

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“Shades of Persephone is a literary mystery that will entertain those who delight in exotic settings, foreign intrigue, and the unmasking of mysterious characters. Crete in 1980-81, more specifically the old Venetian harbour of Chania, provides the background against which expat Canadian Steven Spire labours in pursuit of David Montgomery, his enigmatic and elusive mentor, who stands accused in absentia of treachery and betrayal. The plot has many seams through which characters slide, another of them being the poet Emma Leigh, widow of Montgomery’s imposing Cold War adversary, Heinrich Trüger. In that the setting is Crete, the source of light is manifold, but significant inspiration for Steven Spire comes from Magalee De Bellefeuille, his vision of Aphrodite and his muse. “Find Persephone,” she directs him, “and you’ll find David Montgomery.”  Her prompts motivate much of the narrative, including that of the Cretan underground during the Nazi occupation, 1941- 45.

 

Shades of Persephone presents a story of love and sensuality, deception and war, spiritual quest and creative endeavour. The resolution takes an unanticipated turn but comes as no surprise to the discerning reader. Like Hamlet who must deal with his own character in following the injunctions of his ghostly father, Steven Spire discovers much about the city to which he has returned, but much more about himself and his capacity for love.”