'Raging Desire' has serious underbelly

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Raging Desire a novel by American-Canadian author and artist Monya Loya will be at the Dot.Com Café in Pearce Street Berea on Saturday.

Loya recently made her home in South Africa and to launch her novel entitled “Raging Desire.”

Loya was born in the state of Virginia but grew up in Canada, later moving to Florida to care for her late mother.

Her two previously published works are most diverse. The first was published 15 years ago and was written along with her sister and covered a school programme they worked on. Seven years ago she illustrated a book featuring castles and dragons.

As a 16-year-old, one of her paintings was bought by US President Bill Clinton and was hung in the Blue Room at the White House, a huge honour for one so young.

Her plans include writing a trilogy of novels starting in 2020.

Loya confesses that because of the abuse she suffered as a young girl, she had seriously thoughts of suicide which resulted in extreme guilt on her part. But always in the nick of time suicidal thoughts were thwarted.

When she was 12 her mother became an alcoholic bringing much hardship to the family and leaving Loya to help raise her siblings.

“My dark life only grew from there. Rapes, abuse, deceptions, being left for dead, miscarriages and cancer scares depicted my life. I endured everything from emotional to monetary, physical, verbal and sexual abuse.”

She was told she could not have children after her miscarriage but then came a miracle — the birth of her son, now 24.

But the cycle of abuse continued. Her son was being abused by his father and fortunately Loya managed to foil his attempt at suicide when he was 10 years old.

“That was when I decided to make changes in my life.”

And so “Raging Desire” materialised, with many of the events in the book based on Loya’s own life. “Most of the events and places are real and did happen, only a few are fictitious,” she says. Concerning the title, Loya says, “it’s all about survival.”

To add to Loya's woes, she says that recently 17 close members of her family died in a two-year period from the scourge of cancer, including her husband.

“There will be two sessions at 2pm and 5.30pm at Dot.Com Café on Saturday when I will talk about the book and sign books for anyone who buys, ” Loya said.

The cost of the novel is R150.