Disclaimer: A Glittering Chaos, The Hungry Mirror, The Witchdoctor's Bones, West of Wawa and Cannibals of the Afterlife are all works of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
A Glittering Chaos (excerpt below reviews)
A terrific, smart, funny and incredibly wise story about marriage, secrets and lies and unusual sexual proclivities.
A German woman in her early-forties insists on accompanying her husband to Las Vegas, where he has a business conference. Unknown to her the conference is a pretext; he's there to find a psychic who will help him contact his sister who vanished at fourteen.
A key theme is how one person's psychiatric problems can move like a destructive whirlwind through other people's lives and within the confines of a curious and shifting family dynamic, lie the dark mysteries and shadows of incest.
Melusine (protagonist) is a passionate and creative woman with a high tolerance for the eccentric expressions of human frailty. From suppressed wife and librarian to nude model; to writer of an erotic Sapphic novella; and finally to pastry chef and adoptive mother of a baby boy, she has a good sense of self-discovery-she embraces her erotic desires with self-love after she realises, with surprise, that she even has an erotic self.
A Glittering Chaos is a novel about empowerment and new beginnings at every stage of life, with a diverse cast of unconventional characters of all ages and sexual orientations who find themselves in intriguingly unusual situations. The tension created by the central plot and subplots makes for compelling reading.
Reviews for A Glittering Chaos
An Expert Synthesis of Empathy and Honesty
"An innocent trip to Las Vegas sparks a series of commissions and revelations that unravel a couple’s deepest beliefs about themselves and each other. Like Madame Bovary before it, A Glittering Chaos illustrates with an expert synthesis of empathy and honesty the ways in which our fantasies can have very real, and potentially devastating, consequences." – Richard Rosenbaum, Broken Pencil
Poignant, Even Lyrical
The adage about “what happens in Vegas” is funny precisely because we know it’s wishful thinking. A Glittering Chaos is about what happens when “what happens in Vegas” comes home to haunt you.
Melusine is a German librarian whose ho-hum world wobbles after she tags along when her husband Hans attends a Las Vegas optometry conference. A newly empty nester who speaks no English, Melusine’s voyage of self-discovery is punctuated by the poetry of Ingeborg Bachmann, nude photos in the desert, a black dildo named Kurt, autoerotic asphyxia, and the unravelling of her husband’s sanity because of a secret from his youth.
Lisa de Nikolits manages to integrate all these surprising pieces into a jigsaw that is a poignant, at times even lyrical, story of sexual coming-of-age, and the sometimes hard price paid for the wisdom of middle-age.
– Beverly Akerman, author of The Meaning of Children
Sometimes Comical, Sometimes Touching, Sometimes Outrageous… A Riveting Read from Start to Finish
Lisa de Nikolits is a smart, sensitive and adventurous writer, and she pulls out all the stops in her third novel. Sometimes comical, sometimes touching, sometimes outrageous, A Glittering Chaos is a riveting read from start to finish.
-- Rosemary McCracken, author of Safe Harbor
Master Storyteller Takes The Reader On An Unforgettable Ride
A Glittering Chaos is wonderful, dark, witty and wild. Here is a writer who is willing to explore the darkest corners of the human psyche and expose life for all its beauty and depravity. Lisa de Nikolits is a master storyteller who takes the reader on an unforgettable ride that begins with Melusine and her husband, Hans, whose trip to Las Vegas unravels their lives in ways they never would have thought possible. Stories within stories. Poetry. Madness. Illicit love. A city’s power to unleash forgotten selves. The real dangers of trying to get to the truth. Glittering Chaos has it all. A completely riveting read that will engage the mind, body and spirit.
– Lisa Young, author of When The Earth
Peopled With Vivid Characters Who Suprise and Delight The Reader
In A Glittering Chaos, author Lisa de Nikolits has written a compelling, fast-paced story peopled with vivid characters who surprise and delight the reader. I couldn't stop reading until I reached the end.
– Caroline Clemmons, author of romance, mystery, and adventure
…The Delicious Heights of Sexual Awakening to the Hellish Depths of Human Depravity…
Call It Required Reading.
In her third and most ambitious novel to date, author Lisa De Nikolits heads south of the 49th parallel to deliver a death blow to that clichéd line, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.” Expertly crafted, this twisted page-turner unfolds against a backdrop of arid desert and tacky pleasure palaces and carries us directly into the eye of a storm called “unrequited love.” From the delicious heights of sexual awakening to the hellish depths of human depravity, A Glittering Chaos sure blasted a hole in my ozone! Call it required reading: You simply won’t be able to put it down.
–Kristin Jenkins, The Anglican Journal
A Rollercoaster Ride of Portentous Realizations, Consummate Emotions, Deep-seated Secrets
Filled with intrigue, excitement, anticipation and sexual diversity, A Glittering Chaos grabs its reader from the very beginning. Lisa de Nikolits shines a light on the reality of a family who seems so perfect on the surface. Digging deeper and deeper, de Nilolits takes you on a roller coaster ride of portentous realizations, consummate emotions, deep-seated secrets and sexual relationships spanning from the reckless abandon of a spontaneous affair to the dark recesses of a deranged mind. The biggest problem with A Glittering Chaos is whether to read faster to see what happens next or slow down in order to savor every word.
– Pam Lofton, book reviewer and blogger at oneflewovertheemptynest.blogspot.ca/
Characters Are Multi-faceted and Deep
A Glittering Chaos provides us with just that: a maelstrom of drama, crises, self-doubt, self-discovery, failure, success and much more, against both glamorous and banal backgrounds. The characters are multi-faceted and deep, each struggling to come to terms with their own flaws and weaknesses. It is possible to both despise and adore them in equal measure. As with West of Wawa, Lisa de Nikolits has created a central female character that you cannot help but fall in love with. Melu has so much about her to make you shake your head in frustration but at the same time want to wrap your arms around her. She's lovely and lovable, yet frighteningly frustrating. Once again, Lisa de Nikolits proves she is a master at making a reader think and feel from page 1 to the very end.
– Donna Brown, book reviewer and blogger at tweedling.com.
The Perfect Balance of Yin Yang of Writing Shines Through
A Glittering Chaos assures de Nikolits of her rightful place in the Literati world. The perfect balance of the Yin Yang of writing shines through in every chapter.
– Betsy Balega, author, 'Being Mystic,' producer/host of Tuning in with Betsy.
Back in the living room, Hans reclines in his chair, drinking wine and looking at the stain on the wallpaper.
He feels very serene, removed from all anxiety and it’s a wonderful feeling.
He wonders how Melusine will clean the wall. He’s sure she will find a way. She likes things to look perfect on the surface. Then he chides himself for the thought since that was the very reason he married her; so she’d make his life look perfect.
He thinks back to his conversation with Juditha earlier that day. She had, in a recent dream, sensed Kateri again. She’d asked Hans if he could send more of Kateri’s items to her, as the connection was getting stronger – she could sense it. He’s overjoyed at the thought. His lost sister is returning to him, so what does he care for an unfaithful wife?
He finishes the bottle of wine and falls asleep in his chair.
Melusine, moving her items from their bedroom to Jonas’s old room, is puzzled by her husband’s lack of concern over the state of their marriage. This cult must have more of a hold over him than she had thought. The Hans of the old days would have reassured her and told her that his crazy dalliance was over and that he had things in control. But the Hans of the old days would never have lied, and he would never have sought out a psychic.
She’s also concerned by his aggressive attack on her, telling her that she lied – what did he know, and how did he know it? She wishes Gunther were near and that she could talk to him. He’s accepted a job in New York and he’s already left his wife. He has a whole new life, a life in which she has no real role except that of a pen pal.
She tries to work on her novel.
The story has evolved to the point where Yvonne is trying to convince Isolde to help her kill her boyfriend.
“I can get you a gun, no problem. We live in a bad area, lots of gangs. Then all you have to do is wait for him, I’ll show you the exact way he comes home, he always comes home the same way. There’s a building you can hide in, I’m telling you no one will see you. And I’ll make sure the gun has a silencer, I know people Isolde, I’m telling you, we can do this.”
“It’d be me doing it, not you. There’s no ‘we’ if I kill a man. And I still don’t understand why we can’t just leave and go to Berlin. Honestly, Yvonne, you’re being crazy.”
They’re stuck in an impasse; they still meet daily in the stairwell but their passion has turned to rows, they argue about their future. Yvonne is sulky and then tremulous. Isolde is at her wits end.
“I can’t go on like this,” Yvonne says. “I’m going to run away from both of you. You’re just like him. You both want to keep me trapped like an animal in a cage.”
Isolde is desperate. “But I can make you happy,” she says, “he can’t. You know he can’t.”
Yvonne buttons her blouse closed. Her breasts are straining at the fabric and she sees Isolde eyeing her with hunger.
“You can’t have everything without giving me something,” Yvonne says. “Think about it. I’m only asking for one thing. One thing.”
She leaves Isolde in the stairwell and Isolde leans her forehead against the smooth concrete wall. She has no idea what to do next.
Melusine looks away from her computer. She is distracted; she can feel Hans’s anger through the walls. She can feel Isolde’s longing and Yvonne’s frustrated fury.
It seems as if everything’s falling apart for everyone.
Excerpt from A Excerpt from A Glittering Chaos
Book Trailer for A Glittering Chaos:
Order a copy of A Glittering Chaos online or purchase one in a bookstore near you!
Riveting and Memorable
I absolutely loved A Glittering Chaos. It was wild, racy, poignant, comical, eye-opening and thought-provoking. The characters were so rich and complex and sympathetic - I felt as though I knew them personally. The story raced along, pulling me with it, keeping me turning pages late into the night. The book deals with eroticism but the erotic elements are understated, well-written and non-gratuitous (unlike so many trashy books that are popular these days). It's a riveting and memorable tale told with superb skill by a wonderful writer. I can't wait for the author's next book!
– Bianca Marais
GREAT GREAT GREAT novel!
GREAT GREAT GREAT novel! This is the first novel of Lisa's that I've read and I have nothing but compliments. I don't know how Lisa did it but she created Melusine to be universally relatable to any reader. and for that you can not help but feel for her because the chaos does not leave when she leaves Vegas. And with each page turn you, hope the best for her. I didn't want to put down this page turner and I was quite sad at the end, when I ran out of pages to turn. Great novel, I recommend it to everyone.and 6 five star ratings.
– Patrick Limgenco
A Delightful Escape
This novel offers a delightful escape into one woman's fantasy life. At times funny, at times bawdy, the author transported me into a glittering realm that speaks to the irrational side of desire and sexuality.
This Book Changed My Life!
This book changed my life! I was about to give up a holiday of a lifetime because my husband didn't want me to go. After reading A Glittering Chaos, I decided that I have to go! It is a dream I have. And I I'm not missing it. Thank you for reminding me how important it is to believe in what I need for myself.
— Angela M
Seat Belt Off and Shredded!
OMG...what a ride!! Seat belt on! Wait, seat belt off and shredded! ! This book rocks!
— Lynn Bunker
A Story Rooted In Love and Compassion
I just finished "A Glittering Chaos"! Amazing read in just two sittings! I work in an inner city mission and I talk to "Hans" all the time, he's real and you can see him everywhere while Melusine is the Queen of madness, the closet artist but this story is still rooted in love and compassion ; faith and cult in the midst of the glittering, outpouring chaos. This is WOW. I can see a movie in the making here
— Ting Pimentel-Elger
Funny, Sexy, Can't-Put-It-Down-Read
If you're looking for an amazing, over-the-top, can't-put-it-down read, try Lisa de Nikolit's new novel, A Glittering Chaos (published by Inanna). There isn't a dull moment in this page-turner that's funny, sexy and often outrageous as a dull marriage explodes in a zillion weird (and often hilarious) directions. My only regret is that I didn't save it for a very long upcoming plane trip! Pack it in your carry-on for you next long holiday.
— Carole Giangrande, author of The Gardener On The Moon
Reader Comments and Reviews
Links to blogs and interviews
Blog post by Rosemary McCracken, author of Safe Harbor and Black Water (posted August 3rd, 2012)
Interview with Mandy Eve Barnett, author, (March 31st, 2012)
Post about WFSC Writers Conference (April 28th, 2013)
Interview with Mayank Bhatt – Generally About books (April 20th)
Post by Natasha Deen, Author and Writer-In-Residence in Edmonton
(April 6, 2013)
Lots of lovely votes and comments on CBC Books' site:
A superb summer read is A Glittering Chaos by Lisa de Nikolits. This book is full of surprises, intrigue and wonderful characters.
I highly recommend it.
— Mandy Eve-Barnett
by Lisa de Nikolits should be on everyone's must read list for the summer of 2013. The book keeps you on your toes and putting it down is hard to do!!!..Highly recommended. "A Glittering Chaos" — jtebby
I would like to recommend Lisa de Nikolits new book "
A Glittering Chaos " It is so nice to find a Canadian author to add to my reading list. I now want to read her first two books.
I have always liked to support Canadian authors so it is nice to find a new one..well new to me. — Megabookworm
Just finished reading A Glittering Chaos by Lisa de Nikolits.
An absolutely wonderful read from start to finish. Couldn't put it down. A Glittering Chaos takes us on a wild ride from Germany to Las Vegas to Insanity and back. If you read only one book this summer ,this is the one. — Libradun
A Glittering Chaos by Lisa de Nikolits
This is a page turner I believe everyone will enjoy!!
I couldn't put it down! — patrickI99
by Lisa De Nikolits is fabulous! A Glittering Chaos
I'd like to recommend "The Glittering Chaos" by Lisa de Nikolits. It's just come out and it's a riveting read. Her first book "The Hungry Mirror" was brilliant as well. — BeeCeeMar
Looking forward to reading A Glittering Chaos by Lisa de Nikolits. She is quickly becoming my new favorite writer.
— Syd Bradley