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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Night Sea Journey: A Tale of the Supernatural is a metaphysical literary fantasy by Paula Cappa. Father Raymond Kera is having doubts about his calling; if he ever had indeed been called. His friend and fellow priest, Garcia, lives a different life than Raymond does. He's sworn off the clerical collar he refers to as a noose, and he's been secretly married by a compassionate superior to his beloved, with whom he has a child. Garcia is an at-large priest who preaches in the inner city, sponsors needle exchanges and is considered by some to be a prophet. Raymond is less flashy, and his superior has frequently called him to task for his uninspired sermons and generally lackluster performance. Raymond has petitioned the Vatican for laicization, release from his vows, which was not granted him. Instead, he is sent to a remote island off the Rhode Island coast where his dubious skills as a carpenter will be used to complete construction of the St. Gregory of Nyssa Church.
Reading Paula Cappa's metaphysical mythological fantasy, Night Sea Journey: A Tale of the Supernatural, was a profound, vibrant and intensely moving experience for me. I was, quite literally, caught up in the spell Cappa weaves as her characters navigate their ways through mysteries and dreams manifested in the real world. Raymond, Garcia and the artist Kip Livingston are marvelous characters, especially Livingston whose world is recorded in her paintings; the paints she will use in her works instantly determined as she faces the horrors and turbulent landscapes of her dream-states. Cappa masterfully evokes the wild and natural world where the exiled Raymond finds himself -- you can see the waves breaking over the rocky shoreline, smell the salty, humid sea air and hear the cranes and shorebirds as they fly in formation overhead. Night Sea Journey is lovely, atmospheric and, oh, so very, very good. It's most highly recommended.