Tag Archives: Ayurveda

Scorpio Rising: book review by The Mountain Astrologer

13 Jan

Scorpio Rising by Alan Annand, part of the New Age Noir series, is a gripping murder mystery with a Hitchcockian twist. Private investigator Axel Crowe is an appealing and upstanding protagonist who uses astrology, palmistry and other esoteric techniques to solve crimes. With bits of Vedic wisdom sprinkled through­out, this book is an enjoyable read and an engrossing narrative.

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Scorpio Rising by Alan Annand, part of the New Age Noir series, is a gripping murder mystery with a Hitchcockian twist. The protagonist of this story is a private investigator named Axel Crowe who uses esoteric techniques to solve crimes – intuition, numerology, palmistry, horary astrology, Ayurveda, Vedic astrology, and a well-developed sense of smell. One FBI agent refers to Crowe’s bag of tricks as “whatever it is you do.” Years of observing the subtle signs of the environment have given Crowe the courage to follow his intuition.

He also looks for signs in the form of synchronicity. Here is one unusual method for determining someone’s ascendant: “Out in Central Park, the blue kite wheeled high in the air. Blue was the color of Venus. Libra was an air sign ruled by Venus. On the wall was an Ernst litho­graph, Portrait Bleu, featuring a bird-like figure. More corrobo­ration. [She] would have a Libra ascendant.”

Crowe, of course, has to deal with a lot of skepticism from law enforcement officials regarding his methods. When someone suggests that it is quite a leap from criminology to astrology, Crowe responds: “I suppose, although some would say, they’re both black arts.”

Crowe is an “infomaniac,” according to his Vedic teacher, Guruji, who had tutored him for 14 years and taught him that our greatest enemy is our own desire. (The novel attempts to prove this maxim.) Crowe was quite attached to his guru: “His heart brimmed with love for the man who had shown him the narrow trail through a bramble thicket of ignorance and misperception.”

The bits of Vedic wisdom sprinkled through­out this book were my favorite parts. For example, here’s what Crowe has to say about women: “Women were mothers, sisters, lovers, angels and rarely, but possibly, demons. Every now and then you might have the bad luck to meet a Kali, the Hindu goddess of death and destruction, and she would add your head to her collection of skulls.” We meet one such demon in this novel.

This is not a whodunit. By page 60 of the book, a pattern has emerged, and we know who has done what to whom. The reader simply waits for Crowe and the detectives to find the pattern and locate the parties responsible for the murders.

Scorpio Rising is an enjoyable read and an engrossing narrative, but it is not for the super-squeamish. (If you set out to read this book, it is recom­mended that you have at least one Scorpio planet in your chart.) There are several unsa­vory characters here – murderers, adulterers, and thieves – but the police detectives are painted as real working-class people, warts and all, and Crowe is an appealing, upstanding guy who is nonetheless not quite perfect.

reviewed by Jan de Prosse, The Mountain Astrologer, Feb/Mar 2012

Scorpio Rising by Alan Annand, Sextile, 2011. Softcover, 352 pp, $11.99. ISBN 978-0-9869206-4-6.

For all the latest REVIEWS of Scorpio Rising, see: http://pinterest.com/alanannand/scorpio-rising/

To purchase Scorpio Rising (digital $2.99, paper $11.99)

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