It is clear from the detailed opening that Alexandra, in her late thirties, is the driving force behind the small coven and the focus for the author’s principal characterization. She seems to derive her power from the earthly elements, and her command of elemental forces is demonstrated by her control of a summer storm and by her “bubbies”: small clay statuettes that she sells at local boutiques. Yet Alexandra can also be moody and vain. As well as storms, her momentary whims can cause death. She alternately engages the reader’s empathy and awe with her earth-mother characteristics and engenders fear when, for example, she impulsively wills the death of a squirrel marauding in her garden. Through her own self-doubts, Alexandra demonstrates the shifting concerns of power, love, and sexuality being examined in the story.
Jane Smart, also in her late thirties, is a cellist, and that facet becomes the primary focus for her characterization. Jane is willful, hostile, and gifted; she is impatient with much save the passion for her music. Wildly decadent given the proper motivation, Jane demonstrates the self-indulgent ego that cares for little except personal gratification. It is through Jane that the reader begins to understand how power corrupts.
Sukie Rougemont, in her early thirties, is a reporter for the Eastwick Word. The reader cannot help but see Sukie in a favorable light. Alexandra’s constant comments about Sukie’s...
(The entire section is 530 words.)