The Priestess and the Pen is a powerful piece of work. It is labeled "groundbreaking". This is a fair assessment of Sonja Sadovsky's book.
Using the writings of Pagan authors such as Dion Fortune, Marion Zimmer Bradley and Diana Paxson, Sadovsky explains each authors influence on goddess worship and modern paganism.
This is not light reading material. The reader must sit and concentrate on the subject at hand, but it will be worth it. Sadovsky was able to open my mind, broaden my thoughts and increase my understanding of her viewpoint.
Some key ideas from the book:
"Priestess is a symbol of independent female authority, and a living link to the Goddess she serves."
There are four types of Priestess', each type is reviewed and explained in the book.
1. Earth Mother
2. Moon Mistress
3. Witch Queen
4. Warrior Queen
The Goddess herself is:
2. light and dark
3. maiden, mother and crone
4. dark mother of mystery.
Sadovsky further explains that the threefold goddess is not always accurate nor fitting. The goddess has a 4th face, "hidden but key to personal power and self identity."
The author herself sums up the Priestess and the Pen in the introduction by writing "Priestess and Pen focuses on the literary character of the Priestess in 20th century fiction"
I think she more than adequately succeeds in her goal. My understanding of Modern Paganism is greatly enhanced by reading this book and I recommend it to anyone with an interest in Paganism, or the works of the three spotlighted authors.
FYI- everything in quotation marks was directly quoted from Ms. Sadovsky's work, the PRIESTESS AND THE PEN.