WEET MORN OF JUDAS DAY by Richard Llewellyn


Email this review


strange and tortured book with the focus on the pagan practices of modern Brazil's hinterland, this marks a new departure for the author of How Green Was My Valley. In his more recent Up, Into the Singing Mountains, he transposed his Welsh to South America. This time, his leading character is Irish-bred, The O'Dancey, master of The Inheritance, a contemporary feudal estate. The story is multi-panelled, shifting from one period to another in his checkered love life. His two ""wives"" bore him children-and of his numerous progeny only one daughter, Hilariana, stays by him, growing in hate rather than love, flaunting her achievements in the competitive world of men, and giving her passions to women -- and to the perversions of the candomble, the rituals of the khimbonda meetings, where the worship of the body is opposed to umbanda, the worship of one God through the Holy Ghost. Umbanda, macumba, khimbanda -- the three panels of paganism, were in full operation through the Inheritance. Only The O'Dancey himself was ignorant of it, a devoted adherent to the Catholic Church, his obsession. The whole ghastly truth comes to a head on the ""sweet morn of Judas Day."" Difficult reading, the plot confused, the emphasis uncertain, the contradictions of an ancient way and a modern response hard to unravel- this book may find morbidly fascinated readers, but most of Llewellyn's audience will be repelled.

Pub Date: Aug. 14th, 1964
Publisher: Doubleday