In 1999, Voice of the Goddess won the San Diego Book Award for best unpublished novel. The book and author continue to garner critical acclaim, awards, and positive reviews.

Acclaim Awards Reviews


"Hand vividly portrays a goddess-worshiping society and its inability to withstand the assault of the patriarchs . . . a page-turning style that keeps the reader entranced all the way to the ending that hints at a sure-to-be welcomed sequel."

Booklist-American Library Association

"Superb historical drama! The first novel ever to bring readers into the utterly alien reality of the Minoan world . . . I wasn't able to put the book down. For me it was right up there with James Michener's The Source."

Charles Pellegrino
Author of Unearthing Atlantis

"A remarkable book! A moving love story . . . that recreates the ancient Goddess culture of Crete . . . and an unusual look at the dual nature of humanity and the warring forces that form our soul."

Diana Gabaldon
Author of the Outlander series

"In the vein of Mary Renault: masterfully written, fast-paced, meticulously researched.

Robert Lawrence Holt
Author of NY Times best-seller Good Friday

"Ability to make the details of philosophy, religion, and politics clear . . . absolutely awesome."

Judge, Indiana's Golden Opportunity Contest

"What a breath of fresh air. The time period is unique. The characters are believable and empathetic."

Judge, Barclay Sterling Award

"Wonderful sensuality . . . This proves that even . . . so-called "hard-to-sell" times periods can be made fascinating in the hands of a skilled author."

Judge, Ohio's Ignite the Flame Contest




First Place - San Diego Book Awards
Best unpublished Novel - All genres
First Place - Northeast Indiana Romance Authors
"Opening Gambit" - Historical Category
First Place - Sooner Area Romance Authors
"Shooting Stars" - Historical Category




Hand, Judith. Voice of the Goddess
This fine example of the emerging genre of visionary fiction is equal parts historical novel and myth-based fantasy. Hand uses contemporary archaeological findings about the novel's setting in ancient Crete to depict a woman-centered society threatened by invading Indo-Europeans but finally destroyed by the volcanic eruption of Thera. The heroine, Leesandra, is a Cretan temple priestess in love with a childhood friend, the half-Greek Alektrion. Few love affairs are as star-crossed as theirs, for they spend most of time apart and yearning for one another, Leesandra in training for the bull-leaping contests and later for priestesshood; Alektrion, in waging war at sea to protect the island society. When fate finally brings them together, the tumultuous invasion of Crete ends all hope of reunion. Or does it? Hand vividly portrays a goddess-worshiping society and its inability to withstand the assault of the patriarchs. And she does so in a page-turning style that keeps the reader entranced all the way to an ending that hints at a sure-to-be-welcomed sequel. - Patricia Monaghan

6/2001 Romantic Times
"Akin to an ancient epic poem . . . a tale with . .all the elements that hold one spellbound. Like Dorothy Dunnet and Mary Renault, Judith Hand recreates a lost world with clarity . . . top-notch historical writing from an author with great promise.- Kathe Robin

Historical Novel Society of the U.K.
"...endearing characters, an atmosphere of danger, elemental nature, and the dialog of a culture where the Goddess reigns supreme . . . Hand excels at scene development . . . epic scope evokes the heyday of a lost civilization." - Marcia K. Matthews

03/15/2001 Midwest Book Review - "Internet Bookwatch"
". . . Judith Hand has combined painstaking historical research with a flair for dramatic story telling that truly immerses the reader into a time of Bronze Age high culture and a sophisticated society of Mediterranean goddess-worship of Crete as it existed 1600 years before the birth of Christ. Voice of the Goddess is Hand's debut as a novelist and we can only look urgently for her next venture into historic fiction." - Sharon Stuart

"This strongly crafted novel is a compelling love story etched on a lush canvas of competing Mediterranean cultures as early civilizations clash on land and at sea-a conflicted world restless with military adventurism. At the crossroads of contending tyrants, gods, philosophies, religions and economies stands the serene culture of ancient Crete. Judith Hand invites us to experience that society's struggle to survive. Her heroes and heroines are rooted in historical construct. In pursuit of their aspirations, they make mistakes, ones that could topple one of the loftiest of ancient cultures. Who then might survive the carnage to carry their examples of harmony and coexistence to following generations?

Confessing a personal bias, as a retired military officer, I enjoyed the shrill authentic ring of gnashing swords, the battered groaning shields, splintered oars and shattered masts so vivid in Judith's battle scenes. War is not pretty. Killing is not a game. To her credit, Judith did not write those scenes as entertainments. The human fear, sweat, blood, exhaustion, revulsion and tears weren't omitted." - Newell Tarrant CDR-USN (Ret)

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