Bestselgeren Hestenes klan ble utgitt av Cappelen Damm i 2010 og Live Bonnevie ble nominert til Kulturdepartementets Debutantpris samme år. I juryens begrunnelse heter det:

"Bonnevie skriver medrivende og underholdende om de store spørsmålene i livet. Dette er et dyktig oppbygd drama som holder leseren fanget fra første til siste side. De intense skildringene av mennesker, dyr og natur bidrar også til at dette har blitt en svært fengende romandebut."

Siden utgivelsen har romanen fått særlig stor oppmerksomhet i hestemiljøet og svært gode anmeldelser i nisjeredaksjoner både i Norge og i Sverige.

Den norske utgaven ble utsolgt fra forlaget våren 2016, men er tilgjengelig som e-bok og på biblioteket.

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søndag 16. mai 2010

Clan of the Horses/Hestenes klan - the Symbol

After the novel Clan of the Horses/Hestenes klan was published I have received many questions about the clan symbol; what it means and why it consists of a circle and a wavy line. As stated in the novel the circle represents the moon and the wavy line the serpent (snake). There are no written records about the symbol as such, so I can merely refer to what I have been told and what I have gathered from other sources.

The Moon
The moon is, apart from the sun, the most significant celestial body. It is also a well-known symbol for femininity. The moon is closely linked to women for many reasons, but most importantly for the parallelism between the astronomical month and the menstrual cycle. I believe this is why the moon is one of the two symbols used in a horse clan where all the members traditionally have been women.
There are many examples in art and mythology that closely link femininity to the moon. The enigmatic goddess Hekate Trioditis for one, was depicted with three faces, one for each moon phase, new moon, crescent and full moon (virgin, mother and old woman). In Christian iconography Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus, is often depicted with a moon in the background, or even standing on a crescent. It is also said that the Amazons (ancient, female warriors) used double axes, where each blade was shaped like a crescent. The Incas had a moon cult along side the dominant sun cult. They referred to the moon as the wife of the sun. The moon was called Mamaquilla, “Mother Moon”, but they never made sacrifices to her, only to the sun, which also gives the symbol a very different energy. The metal that corresponds with the moon is silver. In China, the moon is yin.The moon rarely represents masculinity, although there are exceptions, like Máni (the brother of Sól in Norse Mythology).       

The serpent (the snake)
The serpent is one of the oldest and most widespread mythological symbols in the world, and it has various interpretations. One important reason for the serpent’s strong position in many cultures is its ability to cast its skin and thus being symbolically "reborn".
In old, mythological records the serpent often represents a secretive, positive aspect because it was believed to have strong connections to the underworld. Serpents also play an important role in healing- and reincarnation rites in many parts of the world. In many cultures the serpent symbolizes the subconscious.
You will often find serpents represented as potent guardians of temples and other sacred places. The reasons might be that snakes frequently hold and defend their ground, rather than retreat.
A serpent that bites its own tale is a symbol for eternity and is used in many cultures, like in Norse mythology where the serpent known as Midgardsormen surrounds the whole world, the whole of Midgard. But when a serpent is crawling on the ground, like the one used in the clan symbol, it speaks of grounding and a strong connection with Mother Nature.
The serpent is also closely connected to knowledge and wisdom. It was a serpent that persuaded Eve to taste the fruit from of the tree of Knowledge and the result is well known: Adam and Eve gained knowledge, but lost Eden. It is an interesting metaphor. All knowledge comes at a price and insight can sometimes be painful. Yet, once you have it, it can also be a great gift that gives your life and relationships a deeper meaning.

torsdag 13. mai 2010

Clan of the Horses/Hestenes klan - the writing

I think I was around 15 the first time I realized that I would write a book some day - and it somehow felt like a book of substantial volume, even then.
Around 1994 I started out writing about a topic that I found very intriguing and close to heart. It was a project on horses and - in particular – people whom where good at handling them. At the time I had been riding for about fifteen years and I put down on paper everything I had ever learned about horses.

But in the midst of the creative writing process I came to realize that I was not the only one working on a novel with the title “The Horsewhisperer”. The disappointment of having lost both the title and some key elements of my project to another author was hard to accept, but at the time I felt that I lacked the experience and maturity needed to do a rewrite. The only possibility left was to wait - until time was ripe. For years I kept the script in a cool, dark place – like a bottle of wine in a wine cellar. Occasionally I would write down some scenes or some dialogue, but it could be month, even years between each time I wrote these fragments of my future novel.

Then something happened that changed everything, and it gave me a new direction and a very different energy in both my way of being with horses and my way of writing about it. After more than a decade of research on what some people refer to as “the Path of the Horse”. After having seen some of the great trainers of our time and after having tried to fill in some missing pieces in a larger puzzle, I suddenly felt I had a story I really needed to tell. A very different story from the one I tried to tell back in the mid nineties.

The novel Clan of the Horses, is not based on someone else’s experience, it is the result of a life lived and time spent with horses. It is first and foremost a novel about becoming who you are meant to be. It is my experience that horses can guide us on the journey of becoming whole, authentic - and true to our own soul. Horses therefore play an important part in the story, as they have played an important part in my life. Readers unfamiliar with horses tend to read the horse as a metaphor or a symbol for something else, and I guess in some way that is what horses really are.

Personally I think of the novel as an invitation, it is, for what it is worth, nothing more than the sum of all my experience – both in life and with horses. I have taken out 220 pages (100.000 words from the original script), but I have made no compromises when it comes to the core of the story. What I have ended up with is an authentic story that I recognize as the story I – at the age of 15 - felt I was going to write some day.