La Femme Fatale

Marilyn Yu
Art & Lenny (2011)
ISBN 9780578068602

Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (6/11) 

“La Femme Fatale” tells the story of Eva Prim who came into this world in the fourteenth century in Cairo.  When the Black Death threatens to take her life, her parents turn to an old gypsy woman to save her. In doing so, Eva becomes a vampire. As she journeys through the next 700 years, Eva maintains her compassion and humanity towards people.  Enduring through the difficult times brought about by war, disease, politics and the Inquisition, Eva learns how to use her talents and gifts to survive and to help others.  As Eva’s journey comes to end, her spirit has found the enlightenment that she spent a lifetime seeking and she learns to let go of a final attachment so that she can transcend.

The author, Marilyn Yu, is described as, “a creative guru who has interwoven media, ideas and people into her creations for over a decade.”  This description of her is clearly demonstrated in both the format and the tale of “La Femme Fatale.” Created in a card format similar to the tarot, Eva Prim’s life story is told both in writing and in pictures making it something incredibly unique that is sure to be treasured by its owner.  For me, when I opened the beautiful box containing the beautifully designed cards, I felt like I was opening a treasure chest.  

I totally enjoyed the way that this story is formatted because while most books that would tell a tale spanning 700 years would get bogged down by text, the author/artist is able to convey the journey of Eva Prim through both illustrations and some text.  Also by leaving some of the cards just beautifully decorated with no words, readers can use them for reflection and divination into their own subconscious minds to learn more about themselves.  

I think that “La Femme Fatale” would be the perfect gift for a woman who has everything, because I can guarantee you that she has nothing like this, and she would be sure to treasure the beauty of how the story is both composed and portrayed.  The companion guide that accompanies the book would also help guide her to make full use of the cards.  The guide helps to explain the cards and offers questions that will assist the reader as a tool to gain a deeper understanding of herself.

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