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‘Never be ashamed of sex,’ her confidante said at last. ‘Only be ashamed of violence.’

 Mistress of Night and Dawn by  is cobweb-woven novel milling around a mysterious annual sex orgy known as the Ball. This cultic extravagant celebration of multi-sensory theater travels from country to country and remains  a highly guarded secret. The Ball is a world of magic and epitomized by a mistress breaking ground through a stringent love making session. Apparently, the mistress is missing.

The Mistress in Waiting elopes with an engineer attached to the ball after giving birth to a baby girl. They settle down in a condo in the east beach of a lake in California. An act of catching up air and a heated romance ends their lives when they both drown in the lake in a mysterious way. The one-month old baby girl left is Aurelia.

Aurelia is raised by foster parents in east London, a thousand miles away from her place of birth, America. Haunted by mystic death of parents, Aurelia longs to know the truth about her past and what caused their death. When she turns eighteen, she meets a man who will change her entire life but he disappears even before she knows his name. What she remains with is his smell of pomegranate. This happens after attending a circus night in London with her outgoing and men-teaser childhood friend, Siv.


Aurelia’s life is controlled by mystic events. From the stranger who kisses and later deflowers her yet she has never seen his face, to a love tattoo that sprouts around her loins after a thrilling orgasmic self-pleasuring. She is like the protected goddess of the sea who should never go with another man as different encounters with men end up fruitless.

Her friend Siv falls in love with travelling Circus and influences Aurelia to travel to America to study there. Aurelia who secretly admires and fantasizes being at the land of her parents, swims into the idea and the journey to her destiny beckons.

In America, she discovers the existence of the mysterious ball that has been in existence for centuries. She gets caught with the magic world of passion and machinations and her fate gets entwined with the Ball. Her involvement brings her close to the discoveries of her life puzzles; her parents and her past, and the mystic lover, Andrei, who happens to open her heart to love. She realizes that she is the missing Mistress of the Ball.

The training is rigorous and ritualistic and culminated with graduation whereby the master would make love to her and pronounce her the Mistress of the Ball. The mistresses’ destiny was to overlook the ball and ever since the death of Aurelia’s mother, the Ball had been orphaned until they discovered Aurelia.


The novel is a page turner and spellbinding. Apart from being a host of magical realism, it’s a bewitching love story that spans through ages as the author retraces the origins of the ball in the 17th century France paying a close attention to the mistresses; their identity, training and preparations. There’s a hint that it went back all the way to Egypt during the times of Cleopatra. The mistresses are carefully chosen while in their childhood and whisked away from their parents for training and grooming.

When Oriole was not being prepared for the ball, she spent her time embroidering

            or playing the harpsichord…….. She felt lonely, her childhood and whole life she had

enjoyed before being chosen fading into distant memories. …..Why had her parents

consented to the whole enterprise and delivered her into the hands of ball attendants?


The book is explicit in unleashing sexual perversion. I liked the way the author is descriptive with events and setting. Sample this:

The tectonic plates of her began to move, silently, inside her, subtle shifts of equilibrium, as her cravings and her emptiness met on upward path that zigzagged between her heart and brain and Aurelia now abandoned herself fully to the rise of the powerful sensation….

The breeze from the river had lifted, the leaves on the trees dotted geometrically along the Inns Court barely fluttered now, and the whole world felt unreal to Aurelia.

This book is gravely bewitching. Get a copy!


Gidion Makenzi is Professional editor, writer and teacher of English and Literature.