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Deverell, William.

Toronto, McClelland and Stewart, c1984. 451pp, cloth, $19.95, ISBN 0-7710-2665-X.CIP

Reviewed by Ted Monkhouse

Volume 13 Number 2
1985 March

Deverell, a political, cause-oriented lawyer, presently practising in Vancouver, has written three other novels, one of which, Needles,* won the Seal First Novel Award. Dance of Shiva is another first class thriller about the mass murder of a British Columbia cult group and the trial of the leader, Shiva. The story centres around a civil liberties lawyer who champions societal fringe characters. The joy of this novel is not only the rapid pace but the humour rampant in the development of the characters in the picturesque, comic relief, sub plots. There is never a dull moment, typical of Deverell and expected by his readers.

This is a novel for a mature adult reader who can appreciate between-the-lines reading. There is violence, and the language and conversational line is at times coarse but never without relief. It would be wise for a secondary school teacher-librarian to read the book before making it available to all levels of students. However, it does hold a great deal of value in the area of civil liberties, bias, individual freedoms, etc., which are important concerns of today. Highly recommended as a good read but with caution as noted above.

Ted Monkhouse, Wellington County Board of Education, Guelph, Ont.

*Reviewed vol.VIII/l 1980, p.48.

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