Antieau, Kim

views updated

ANTIEAU, Kim

PERSONAL:

Born in LA; married Mario Milosevic (a poet). Education: Eastern Michigan University, B.A. (English), M.A. (English); University of Arizona, M.L.S., 1987.

ADDRESSES:

Agent—c/o Author Mail, Forge, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010. E-mail—[email protected].

CAREER:

Librarian and researcher. Daughters of Nyx: A Magazine of Goddess Stories, Mythmaking, and Fairy Tales, editor, 1994-96.

WRITINGS:

Blossoms, Pulphouse Publishing (Eugene, OR), 1991.

Trudging to Eden: A Collection of Short Stories, Silver Salamander Press (Eugene, OR), 1994.

The Jigsaw Woman, Roc (New York, NY), 1996.

The Gaia Websters, Roc (New York, NY), 1997.

Coyote Cowgirl, Forge (New York, NY), 2003.

Also author of numerous short stories and creative nonfiction.

WORK IN PROGRESS:

Lady Liberty, the first in a series of novels about American first ladies; and a book of essays.

SIDELIGHTS:

Kim Antieau was born in Louisiana but grew up in Michigan where she attended Eastern Michigan University. After receiving her B.A. and M.A. in English there she earned her M.L.S. from the University of Arizona in 1987. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, poet Mario Milosevic, and she works as a librarian and researcher. Her interests include folklore, myths, and legends; these influences can be seen in the many science-fiction, fantasy and horror stories she has written, as well as in her three novels.

Antieau's first novel, The Jigsaw Woman, is the story of Keelie, the product of a plastic surgeon who constructed her for his own purposes from the dead bodies of three other women. Keelie awakens and begins a journey to discover the identities of these three women, uncovering first their most recent situations and eventually journeying back to their past lives, until she is transformed into the death-goddess Eriskegal. Charles De Lint in the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction described the book: "The journey is a harrowing one—through witch burnings, the Inquisition, the colonization of the Americas and other dreadful times—and it is told with a poet's eye and an empath's appreciation." A contributor for Kirkus Reviews found The Jigsaw Woman to be "a powerful and impressive statement, with lots of complicated scenarios, relationships, and symbols, though descriptive rather than prescriptive." Don D'Ammassa of Science Fiction Chronicle wrote, "There are times when the novel is outrageously funny, other times when it's creepy, and still others that verge on the tragic."

Antieau's second novel, The Gaia Websters, takes place in the future, during a time when machines are outlawed, and focuses on Gloria Stone, a healer living in the Arizona Territory. Gloria, who has no memory of the past beyond ten years ago, is troubled when an illness she cannot cure threatens her people. Her quest to uncover the source of this illness leads her to the troubling knowledge that she and other healers like herself are actually androids. Disheartened by the realization that she embodies everything she has come to disdain, Gloria must still find a way to help her people and stop the epidemic. This novel, which takes place in Arizona where Antieau earned her M.L.S., shows the author's appreciation for the American West in its vivid descriptions of the territory. Christina Schulman of Epiphyte Book Review wrote that the novel has "lovely descriptions of the Arizona desert" and Susan Hamburger of Library Journal likewise found the book "redolent with the sounds and scents of the desert." Despite her fine descriptive powers Schulman found Antieau's novel a bit disappointing, writing: "Antieau never quite descends into preachiness, but she bounces on it pretty hard a few times. She also fails to fully develop her premise or explain Gloria's healing powers." Margaret Miles, in Voice of Youth Advocates, found The Gaia Websters only "mildly satisfying," but Patricia Monaghan of Booklist called it "an innovative, gripping, very satisfying tale."

Antieau's next novel drew on her love of exploring the American West and her passion for food. Coyote Cowgirl is the story of Jeanne Les Flambeaux, the one failure in a family of culinary geniuses. When her family's ruby scepter, a precious heirloom, is stolen while in her care, Jeanne must embark on a cross-country journey to retrieve it. She takes with her the family's other heirloom, a crystal skull that talks only to Jeanne and claims to have a psychic connection to the scepter. However, her quest becomes more complicated when a series of women go missing along her trail and she becomes concerned for her own safety. Following her story's conclusion Antieau includes some of the famous Flambeaux family's recipes. Antieau explained on her Web site, kimantieau.com, that the idea for the novel came from her own experiences driving across country with her husband and imagining the things that could go wrong during their journey. She also expressed, "I had more fun writing Coyote Cowgirl than any other book I've ever written." A contributor for Kirkus Reviews called the book "fun, often gripping." Writing in the Bloomsbury Review, Kate Aid noted that the author's "focus on food helps to develop her characters, and grounds the reader in delicious gustatory detail." She commented that although Antieau sometimes adds "too much extract of new age spirituality," she nevertheless "avoids preaching any particular philosophy … allowing her characters to debate for themselves the best way to live." Claude Lalumiere of Infinity Plus commended Antieau's work, "Coyote Cowgirl may ultimately be a bit light and predictable, but its quirky cast of characters is charmingly drawn and there's an infectious sense of fun that permeates the whole book."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Bloomsbury Review, July-August, 2003, Kate Aid, review of Coyote Cowgirl, p. 11.

Booklist, June 1, 1997, Patricia Monaghan, review of The Gaia Websters, p. 1668.

Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 1996, review of The Jigsaw Woman, pp. 104-105; May 1, 2003, review of Coyote Cowgirl, p. 620.

Library Journal, May 15, 1997, Susan Hamburger, review of The Gaia Websters, p. 106.

Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, February, 1996, Charles De Lint, review of The Jigsaw Woman, pp. 35-37.

Science Fiction Chronicle, May, 1996, Don D'Ammassa, review of The Jigsaw Woman, p. 57.

Voice of Youth Advocates, October, 1997, Margaret Miles, review of The Gaia Websters, pp. 250-251.

ONLINE

Catch22.com,http://www.catch22.com/ (October 22, 2003).

Epiphyte Book Review,http://www.epiphyte.net/ (October 22, 2003), Christina Schulman, review of The Gaia Websters.

Green Man Review Online,http://www.greenmanreview.com/ (October 22, 2003), Maria Nutick, review of Coyote Cowgirl.

Infinity Plus,http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/ (October 22, 2003), Claude Lalumiere, review of Coyote Cowgirl.

Kim Antieau Home Page,http://www.kimantieau.com (February 18, 2004).

About this article

Antieau, Kim

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article