Jaguars, by Georgina Garrastazu

Of Lost Worlds And Becoming

♥ A Review

One of the great advantages of having a dog is the relatively inexpensive early warning system they provide. You know me, Mom, I can get rather absorbed, and anyone could potentially just sneak up on me unexpectedly. So if I’m inside, doing whatever, I can always hear her little bark or three, and if there be a whiney sound = they be friendly, but if I hear another bark or two = not so sure of them.

I hear a “well hello there”. When I get to the door I see Irish is performing her usual bow and bounce greeting for a Canada Post delivery guy, and so I try to curb her enthusiasm. But no, this guy was a pro.

You know, Irish gives those you’re going off to Mars the next day and she’ll never see you again type hugs Adrianne gives {my cousin, who was born with Cerebral Palsy}.

This dog just loves everyone with such a gusto it makes me blush. So I warn the postie that she’s a little gregarious in her affection for EVERY human on earth. He’s like “oh, don’t worry, I have two German Shepherds of my own, she’s fine“.

Irish, smiling ear to ear, is lapping up the affection this nice man is doling out to her. So he hands me this big envelope, and I set it down beside me on the stoop and proceed to chat with him for another 10 minutes or so, as he told a couple of stories of his own canine friends. Real nice guy.

After he leaves…I rush back in and almost skipping, rip open the package, and there before me are TWO hard copies of JAGUARS, by Georgina Garrastazu. I’d told her I wanted Lexi to read it too, so she sent me two. I’d purchased it soon after she announced it was available via Amazon as an ebook months ago and had LOVED it.

My Top 5 books
L-R: Late Nights On Air by Elizabeth Hay, The Onion Girl by Charles de Lint, The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, Jaguars by Georgina Garrastazu, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

This book has now acquired a spot in my Top 5. .

Georgina was one of my first friends via WordPress 3 years ago, and her encouragement helped me through that first year of dark days after Tim died.

Jaguars is this powerful story of a young boy starting out on his journey towards who it is he’s going to become.

In the beginning, it draws you slowly into this mythological world. A world that today we know only by the ruins they left behind. It’s the author’s vision of a time and people, the Toltecs; a civilization long extinct.

With a vein of what if that weaves through the story, the images Georgina creates are stunning. I can picture the ball court where the main character, Prince Zaki, first sees that magical game we generally know little about, and the game comes to life before our eyes, in all this fantastical wonder. I can see the boys sitting around their first master, as Zaki takes his first steps outside his sheltered life within the Palace.

With an animistic touch, Zaki and his companion, his soul friend – a Jaguar, Chahal – partake of a journey of the spirit. Much like my Irish, he is protected and even guided, in ways only a true soul friend can. It’s funny how over time you do develop this unspoken communication between each other, and this familiar, this true friend, for reasons unknown, attach themselves to you. They love you with this fierce and unconditional love, rare outside your Mothers arms.

I relate to that sense of awe and wonder at the magical world one discovers when you find your true calling; back when I first went to BealArt. It’s that feeling of discovering a world you didn’t even know existed. A world different from what you had imagined, but one that had been all around you your whole life, yet now you have new eyes to see it with.

Growing up, I had held so tightly inside myself, to myself, afraid to reach out to others, afraid of their scrutiny, their judgment. That feeling of being at once privileged, yet also a little isolated in that sheltered world, I can identify with.

Going to BealArt, like with Zaki’s lessons, is very much like a world where every step forward one takes, you gain a little more, you see a little more, things become more vivid, and this new world opens up with every stride you take.

Still today, those lessons resonate, and they continue to guide me in ways I am probably unaware of. These lessons become internalized, and much like with Zaki, you ingest them, like mana, and they stir inside you, grow, and you reclaim that which has always laid within. These things you could only imagine before, ARE magical to you. And regardless of where you go, or who you end up becoming, these first steps out into that divine world, inside, you will forever more see the world with those eyes.

This book I guess has been 17 years in the making. Through what must have been yards of research, she has created this rich and complex story, with characters that are real. Her ability to weave the fantastical with the historical is such a gift. It’s as if she has touched a vein, and her words channel this flow of place, and people, and time, that only the gods know the truth of.

And speaking of journey’s, your oldest granddaughter is setting off on her own journey this year. Yes, she graduated from public school this week and starts High School next September.

She has a lot of you inside her, like your shyness, and your gentle nature. You should see her, she’s beautiful and loving. You would be proud of her. And like Zaki, she’s growing up and becoming more, learning, doing things she didn’t think she could. She’s forming strong friendships, and breaking away from the sheltered world of home, and Mom and Dad. One minute she’s being goofy and childlike, yet in a blink of an eye, she’s this young woman who knows her own mind.

I think I’m going to mention to Lexi she should see if she’d be interested in reading Jaguars. I mean, summer before High School and all, she’ll be a busy girl, but I remember it was when I was first in high school you had me read Roger Zelazny’s Chronicles of Amber series. You know Mom, that hooked me as a lifelong reader. So you never know.

My Golden Shadow

I can hear the rain just now, gently, steadily, falling against the wavy glass outside the kitchen window. It has this staccato rhyme that is so soothing. So I do believe the weather people are indeed correct, and it’s probably going to be a wet weekend. I love the rain, however, my golden rainy day shadow, not so much.

Well, should sign off and maybe get a little done today. Perhaps I’ll in the future share more reviews of books I’ve read. I never thought of it until now Mom, but it has been years since I talked about books with you. I really miss that. I know you would love this book. Thank you for guiding me, and thank you for encouraging me to read, for it’s through that world these individuals create, you know, that sometimes sustain me, through these lonely days. The best ones though remind me of that person I am inside, you know, the one we sometimes ignore or perhaps have forgotten.

Love you Mom, and I miss you.



Visit Georgina’s blog @
Or, ebook or hardcopy here.

2 thoughts on “Of Lost Worlds And Becoming

  1. Ahhh yes… the Amber books. I dove into the Pern books by Anne McCaffrey and absolutely loved them! Lots of things happening on so many levels… and since I’ve always loved dragons I could identify with the dragon riders.
    There are so many things we want to say to a young woman beginning her journey to her own power but then we discover that we can’t say anything at all, because we would just be saying our words, describing our journey. We can only watch and be there… in the flesh or in the spirit. There are many strong women around her… and around you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I should find both series again… wonderful epic stories…been years since I’ve read either. And I’m stunned by that young woman she has become…amazed really. Young girls change so much during this time…and become rather difficult and demanding too ;-)


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