The Water of Life

Jae Deighn
The Water of Life
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Release Date
November 2015
Book 1 of Acts of Iniquity
Erotic Romance, LGBTQ, Urban Fantasy

Antiquities expert Katheryn Hearn thought nothing could shock her after living in New York City, but she was wrong. Haunted by nightmares of a man she could barely recall after waking, Katheryn receives a cryptic invitation promising release and to shed light on her restless nights. Following its instructions will lead her into the underworld of the city, peel back the skin that guards the blurry divide between human and myth, and expose her own rare condition: that of a divided soul, a woman in the waking world and a man in the land beyond the veil of dreams.

For Katheryn, opening her eyes completely will be a double-edged blade as the immortal Vestiges that aimlessly roam the city in the guise of men and women come to see her for what she is in return, and they hunger for what she carries with her. A young woman with amber eyes and the scent of a predator will come to hound Katheryn's steps, but only time will tell if the woman carries danger, the seeds to Katheryn's sexual awakening, or both.

⁂ Warning: This work contains questionable language, sexually explicit situations, and acts of violence. Just like mythology. ⁂

Book Review by Delta (reviewer)
Dec 18, 2015   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
177 people found the following review helpful
Ahhhh…hmmm. Well, I'll say this for THE WATER OF LIFE, it's one of the most unique books I've ever read.

Katheryn Hearn has been dreaming of a man. A man she's never met, of actually BEING that man herself. She receives a cryptic card inviting her to discover her true self, and when she arrives at a nondescript Manhattan building, she's fascinated by the happenings within. Soon, Katheryn meets the fortune teller Daciana, who weaves her magic and turns Katheryn into a woman…who grows a large penis when aroused. She attracts the attention of Bacchante, Becca, who promises her undying love and devotion if Katheryn would just use her magic cock on her. Becca shows Katheryn around her new reality, introducing her to beings she's never heard of and places she didn't know existed. Not every being is benevolent though, and there are many out there who would stop at nothing to obtain Katheryn's semen, aka the water of life.

Well now, this is a first: I've been rendered speechless. I truly don't know what to say about THE WATER OF LIFE. It started off pretentious and weirdly high brow, confusing the hell out of me with every unusual statement and odd bodily growth. It took a long time for me to totally get what the hell was happening as Katheryn struggled with the two sides of herself. One that had a penis & one that didn't. She's got large breasts, a vagina…and a clit that grows into a huge cock when wildly aroused. She also has a giant ancient phallus in her living room, inhuman strength and a pansexual stalker who claims to be centuries old yet looks like a teenage boy. I was distinctly uncomfortable with some of these facets of the storyline, and with the odd story in general…but like the proverbial train wreck, I couldn't look away.

See, I adore ancient mythology, and THE WATER OF LIFE ties together several stories, characters and details into this wild ride. In a modern setting, it very much fucked with my head, however I found that once the action and mystery kicked in I enjoyed the book much MUCH more. At halfway through, I thought I would never ever consider reading any follow ups to this book, but by the time the epilogue finished, I was intrigued enough to MAYBE give another one a shot. There's loads of sex in THE WATER OF LIFE, all lesbian in nature and all very erotic. But is it really lesbian if the woman grows a penis and everyone in a hundred mile radius covets its come? I just don't know!!!! Would Michael the gay bodyguard want to have sex with Katheryn's big magic stick even though she still has breasts and a vagina?!? These are questions that will probably keep me up tonight!!!

Bottom Line: This is one of the most unusual books I've ever read, and the fact that one of the MC's has horns isn't even a blip on the oddness scale. I'm torn over telling readers to steer clear of this little slice of crazy or encouraging you to check out a new, fresh read.
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Book Review by BookAddict (reviewer)
Mar 23, 2021   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
38 people found the following review helpful
Obscure, surreal and ahead of its time, WATER OF LIFE is definitely something different. From a uniqueness standpoint, this book receives a 4 star from me. From an overall writing and editing standpoint, it does drop down which averages to a 3 star.

Katheryn is experiencing odd dreams and receives a note from a random person who says they can help and explain it to her. This leads to an immediate "falling down a rabbit hole" adventure; Katheryn picks up the "drink me" bottle and goes along for an erotic ride. The person who says she can help Katheryn brings to mind, the Caterpillar in Alice in Wonderland. What Katheryn experiences in her dreams and now in real life… I have only experienced in dreams and it is just as disorienting.

What I liked about this book is it brings forth a Jungian-esque concept and manifests it into a potentially amazing world building. The concepts in this book are fresh, unique and I like it. The character building though was mediocre. What brought this book down is the pace of the story. My recommendation would be for the author to condense the first 50% of the book into about maybe 1/3 of the length to move it along a bit more. I get that this first part was to help set up the last half of the book. However, unless a person is determined to read to the end, most readers will lose interest within the first 10 to 15% of the story, which is a shame.

I find that this book at times, reminds me of the movie Valerian, which I love. I love that movie because my dreams are eerily similar to that movie. Which means this story is familiar enough in style that I enjoy it and can relate to it. One of my favourite authors wrote a blog post once about why so many books are the same theme with a very little variation. The reason? Because it sells and anything unfamiliar or pushing a reader outside their comfort zone is difficult for readers to consume. A very small percentage (probably less than 1%) of readers can handle anything out of the norm. Unfortunately for author Jae Deighn, their book is so out of the norm it looks as if follow up stories will not happen. That is a shame. They have some really innovative ideas and I like them. I wish they could work with a good editor to make the story move at a better pace and to develop their characters a bit more. The potential is definitely there. Or perhaps, the author can move into the screen writing. Because this as a movie would be AWESOME!

My main regret with this book is that I didn't read it until too many years too late. If the author is still around, I encourage them to keep writing in this world because it is really something different and I like it. This book is recommended to readers who have active dreams, love sci-fi with erotic elements and enjoyed the movie Valerian.
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