I’m thrilled to welcome Kate Belle to Book’d Out today to promote her newest release, published by Simon & Schuster, Being Jade.
Kate is a multi-published author of dark, sensual love stories that will mess with your head. Her interests include talking to strangers, collecting unread books, and ranting about the world’s many injustices. She writes regularly about women, relationships, sexuality and books on her blog, The Ecstasy Files. She is also the creator of the Eros in Action writing sex workshop.
Kate lives, writes and loves in Melbourne with her small family and very annoying pets. The Yearning was released in 2013 to rave reviews. Being Jade is her second novel.
“A tragic death. A family divided. One truth can set them free.
Banjo Murphy is killed on the night he finally musters the courage to walk away from his wife Jade after twenty five years of repeated infidelities. In the aftermath, Banjo is bewildered to discover he still exists, but death has placed an invisible wall between him and his beloved family. In despair he watches Jade collapse into deep depression and his daughters, Lissy and Cassandra, struggle with their unexpected loss.
Lissy is tortured by guilt and the mysteries surrounding her father’s death. What compelled Banjo to leave the night he died? Why won’t Jade speak about what happened? In spite of their volatile relationship, Lissy believes her parents’ love to be enduring, but sensible Cassandra sees things differently. When Cassy discovers a sketch book chronicling Jade’s extra-marital affairs, the truth of their parents’ relationship begins to unfold and Lissy’s loyalties are divided.
Searching for answers, Lissy contacts Jade’s ex-lovers, unaware her father’s spirit watches as they visit. Unable to let go of his one true love, he aches to know that Jade loved him above all others. Banjo is taken on a journey of discovery through Jade’s memories as the lovers unveil long hidden secrets about her affairs. But the mystery remains, frustrating Banjo and Lissy, until Lissy’s questioning leads her to an explosive truth. One that will finally set her family free.“
Click the image below for my review
Being Jade: Born of myth and dreams
One thing about me that consistently raises eyebrows is that I studied astrology. It seems to be seen as a quirk, or a point of interest, or a mark of madness. It doesn’t matter, I’ve long gone beyond caring what judgments people make in reference to that particular interest of mine. We choose to believe what suits us and for me, even with my science degree, astrology has always ‘worked’ as a framework for understanding the world and the people in it.
The astrology I studied was steeped in modern psychology and my teachers were all qualified therapists. Much of what I learnt had its roots in Jungian psychology and this has lent a depth to my writing I might not otherwise have had. Over and again I have drawn my characters from the richness of myth and dreams. Being Jade is no exception.
The seed of the character Jade germinated in my mind about ten years ago. Through my study I was introduced to the idea of the dark goddess. She takes many forms – Kali, Hecate, Persephone and Lilith. From the get go the stories and imagery of Lilith captured my imagination.
Lilith is an ancient, ancient Goddess, dating back to the earliest Sumerian and Hebrew myths of 5000 years ago. In her earliest form she represented the creative life-death cycle within women. She was a sexual force, the purest form of the feminine that ever existed, full of wisdom and healing. She is known to be the first wife of Adam, predating Eve, until Christianity transformed her into the snake who tempted Adam with the sinful apple in the Garden of Eden.
As matriarchal religions (where Mother is God) were overtaken by patriarchal ones (where Father is God), Lilith’s stories changed. Instead of being a source of power, she became a threat. Women’s sexuality and ability to birth life was feared and despised in the new world, and all that we understood about Lilith was pushed underground. She became the femme fatale, a temptress, vampire and baby-killer. Women soon learned that their sexuality was in some way dangerous and needed to be controlled if they were to live a peaceful life. Until now.
Gradually Lilith is re-emerging from our collective unconscious. Jade is one of a number of Lilith-type characters that have begun to appear in fiction, film and life. Unapologetically sexual, she is a complex, creative and deeply soulful character and I’m certain her particular view of morality will create much discussion.
I completed my astrological studies with a thesis on the dark goddess Lilith and how her mythology related to the lives of women who lived true to themselves, in spite of pressures from loved ones and society at large. Germaine Greer, Betty Friedman, Gloria Steinman and Simone de Beauvoir, the early pioneers of the feminist movement, trail blazers who gave women permission to step outside of the stereotypes and be themselves, were all strong Lilith characters.
Jade was born of their ideologies and of the earliest of the dark goddess myths. We all have our own layered expectations or views of women, developed through conditioning and experience. With Jade I tried to put judgement aside and imagine (although it is almost impossible to do so) what a woman free of social, political and religious stereotyping might look like. Jade evolved as deeply conflicted character, a loving mother, devoted and caring lover, a free and creative spirit who sees that being true to herself hurts those she loves most, but refuses to sacrifice her authenticity for others sake.
I think Jade might be a woman of our times, or perhaps, a woman of our future.
Being Jade is available to purchase from