Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. Today I’m reviewing a book called Mayday by Mike Steeden. I haven’t read many books in this genre before, in fact, I don’t think I’ve ever read such a mix of genres, and the author was kind enough to invite me to read a paperback version of his book, sent all the way from England. Steeden has created a work of fiction with a sprinkle of sci-fi/fantasy, romance/thriller – certainly an interesting mix of genre for such a greatly imagined story. This is the story of Mayday, a beautiful, intelligent, all-knowing, healer with a zest and curiosity for all life has to offer, all the while having to dodge danger.
The girl known as ‘Mayday’ was born a fully-fledged human being, her creator, a professor of remarkable ingenuity for he had ensured that she had amazing capabilities, jealous scientists could never fathom…capabilities that easily trumped any claimed miracles from days of yore. Moreover, as she evolved she realized she had the wherewithal to cure the sick, feed the starving and humble the wicked, at the blink of an eye. However, her accomplishments were also her curse for in religious circles the powers that be could not accept that she was a bona fide mortal, after all she was not born of womankind, nor sanctioned by their alpha-God who would never countenance a female messiah. They considered her an irritating robotic, and rather than allow her to rock their boat and save humanity, they sought her legal execution.
This is Mayday’s extraordinary story, told by the man who loved her so.
My 5 Star Review:
What a ride this read will take one on. To be honest, I’ve never read this type of mixed genres of a book before, and the author’s blurb is an excellent condensed summation of so much more.
Mayday was created, human-like, savvy, intelligent, sexy, assertive, and gifted with superhuman abilities. She was created as perfection by a scientist, causing piqued curiosities about Mayday who becomes sought out by those of whose beliefs about everything she was created from, opposing her existence- mainly, the Catholic Cardinal society.
It begins with Mayday left hidden in a dingy cellar in Paris after being rescued from the ‘zoo’, and discovered by Andrei Voland, a wealthy Frenchman who would become her lover and protector. In this time of the early 1930s, where anything of the unusual was still considered sorcery to the non believers, Mayday had become the most wanted woman by authorities and the church. Voland takes her in to his place, and has Edith, a theatrical cosmetician, friend, dye Mayday’s hair and give her a new wardrobe so she wouldn’t be recognized. Mayday’s beauty is astounding.
After Mayday is disguised, and revamped, Voland learns about her sexual curiosity and voracious appetite as a romantic night ensues – the first of many more escapades to come. After Voland goes to retrieve her meager belongings from the basement where she was held captive, so as not to leave any evidence of her existence behind, he notices a suspicious woman down the street at Edith’s door, about to throw a hand grenade. He stops her in time as he discovers the explosion already up in smoke where Mayday was previously kept. He lifts the now shocked Edith into his arms and takes her back to his place. In fears he may have been followed, Voland makes immediate plans to take both women to another of his homes, in Lille, just outside of Paris, to hideout and and to avoid any potential danger.
Once safely at Voland’s village, the women and Voland enjoy each other’s company – verbally, and sexually, as Mayday has no inhibitions and continues to discover herself. Once the professor who created Mayday visits them, along with some other friends who are soon to become part of the harem gang of friends, Mayday, who prefers to be naked, as she was created, tells her story to her audience about what happened to her after she was created. She was captured and held in a private zoo where she was studied (inside and out) to see if she was human. She was left in a cage like an animal until inspections were satisfied, with the zookeeper’s intentions of having her executed for being blasphemous, defying God, because of her origin and power. Without spoilers, she is rescued, and the game heats up as Voland, Mayday and company enjoy their own company and stay vigilant that nobody is on their tail seeking out Mayday.
Mayday is brilliant, absorbs information like a sponge with a curiosity for learning, reading, observing, and has superpower abilities – like being able to heal the sick, feed the hungry (while in disguise), therefore, always having to dodge the evils who search for her. On her missions, she is always cloaked and uses her power to make those she’s helped, forget her from memory – but there are always ‘those’ who may have caught a glimpse of her. Her good deeds seem to always put her and the harem of characters, along with Voland, in peril.
There are private orgies with Valond, Mayday, Edith, and a few select others who are invited into their circles. Valond decides to open a travel agency where Mayday can use it for a front to escape to other places and realms and pop back in after saving others.
Mayday finds people to save in some of the churches she visits along a roadtrip with Valond, driving to Italy and visitng the Vatican as well as some famous churches and museums- dangerous places for her to go as the Papal system would have her executed for being who she is if she were to be discovered. She pushes her luck by telling Valond she wants to experience the confessional at St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican and transforms herself into ‘Black Frankie’, disappears and turns herself back into the posh Mayday. And once again the evil ones are in search for her.
In the last third of the book after Mayday and Andrei Voland return to Lille, they stop in at their Looking Glass Travel Agency to visit their gang of friends and find evil has prevailed. Their friend, Thunderman is murdered, Edith and Eloise are tied up and naked, and Princess, is missing. Eloise tells of what went on as the so called Latter Day Inquisitors on behalf of the Cardinals of the Holy Inquisition, loosely affiliated with the ‘Scientific Law Society’, had found their way to the agency in search of Mayday and captured Princess, mistaking her for Mayday.
After the initial shock wears off, Voland formulates a plan with his gang to rescue the Princess, who he knows well, was taken back to that same zoo where Mayday was once rescued from. Mayday uses her special powers to bring Edith out of shock and grief after what she witnessed with Thunderman’s murder and her own captivity while Voland sends off his brother Henri along with Eloise to rescue the Princess. They devise a short-term plan to have Mayday go around various places using her powers to cure people while Princess is held captive to show her captors Princess is innocent because the magic continues elsewhere – a risky plan for sure!
Alas, WWII is approaching. By 1940 the Germans invade France. The gang had already thwarted a bunch of Germans busting in their home trying to take it over, but Mayday used her mind control to chase them out. They knew they had to come up with a plan, so they decided to join the resistance. The girls would go dancing in those nudie bars (where they felt comfortable), and attract the attention of German soldiers, extracting information from them unknowingly, as Mayday wooed them with her body and used her hynotic eye contact to extract what she needed from them while leaving them to forget she existed. It was just after the dancing bar event after all members of the harem were home safely with Mayday that she decided there’s just just too much evil on this place called earth, and perhaps it was time she considered leaving for another realm. But does she?
Like I mentioned earlier, this book is a whirlwind of genres from romance and adventure, with a touch of science fiction, time-travel, fantasy, and also a thriller. That’s best I can describe it. The author has certainly demonstrated his vast imagination for such a story with its sometimes lude shenanigans and language, but nevertheless, keeping us keen on what on earth could happen next. I warn here of some explicit language and sexual content.
This is a well researched and written book that delves into the mood of the era with richly crafted characters and changing subplots. If some of the aforementioned content isn’t a problem for you, I invite you into the alluring storyworld of Andrei Voland and Mayday whom the author, Steeden, has eccentrically and masterfully created.