Read Takes One to Know One: An Alison Kaine Mystery by Kate Allen Free Online
Book Title: Takes One to Know One: An Alison Kaine Mystery|
The author of the book: Kate Allen
Edition: New Victoria Publishers
Date of issue: September 28th 1996
ISBN 13: 9780934678742
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 732 KB
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Reader ratings: 5.5
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This book comes up with all the most clichéd granola-eating, separatist, goddess-worshiping lesbians ever and pokes a lot of fun at each trope. A bunch of women in New Mexico are having a construction retreat at Mariposa Ranch during which an adobe building is to be completed. The visiting dykes will be camping out, having fun, sharing feminine, lesbian energy and getting back to the earth. So traveling with Michelle in Michelle's big pickup, Alison heads to the desert for a relaxing retreat.
The character names say a lot about this group. We have Seven Yellow Moons, G-Hey!, Lavender Chrystalpower, Gaya, Hawk, Persimmon and the "medicine woman" Etonya-kyita, whose name "was taken from me at the schools of the white man, and I became Sarah Embraces-All-Things". I nearly choked on my drink when Alison mischievously introduced Michelle as "Painted Pony on a Serene Horizon in the City", or "City Pony" for short. It turns out that Alison and Michelle were invited only because Michelle owns a cement mixer.
And the list of rules: in-and-out once, no men's publications, no men's voices, no smoking, no drugs, no S/M, no enslaved animals, no perfume or commercial shampoos or other scented products. I half expected tampons to be banned in favor of hand-made hemp washable pads. Oh, and the vow all the women are required to sign:
"I vow and agree that I will dedicate myself to the creation of a new order of matriarchy while I am on this retreat at Mariposa Women's Land. I agree from this moment on to rededicate my heart to the creation of a way of life that renounces racism, abled-bodiedism, ageism, classism, sexism and male dominance. From this moment on I renounce all rules of the patriarchy which are harmful to women and I will do my best to take these vows out into the world once I leave the land."
Alison feels out of place, and... she had invited her girlfriend Stacy (also known as Mistress Anastacia in her role as a professional dominatrix), and Stacy's friend Liz, who is also into the leather scene. Oil and water doesn't seem like a flammable enough combination to describe this mix.
Of course, Stacy and Liz show up late and end up camping outside the premises, where they proceed to booze it up, toke like Cheech and Chong, do magic mushrooms, etc. And Stacy keeps trying to shove drugs into Alison, which is Very Bad since as a cop she's subject to random drug tests. This part bothered me a hell of a lot. I realize that Stacy and Liz are set up here to be demonized by the collective, but usually people into BDSM are really cautious with booze and drugs, and absolutely forbid them during scenes. Most tops I've met are so Type A they dislike the feeling of loss of control that goes with intoxicants as well.
All of this sets the scene for another murder mystery. One of the women of the collective is found dead in the sweat lodge. Alison believes it's murder. The collective disagrees and wants to burn her on a giant wood pyre. Alison wants to call 911 and report the death. Thus the mystery unfolds. Once the book reached this point, the mid-section dragged. There was conflict all over the place, but it seemed almost random. The pacing was slow and the episodes of conflict were irregular. The whole climax scene was confusing to me. The book's not bad, but it's not nearly as good as the first two novels in the series.
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