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The Lullaby Illusion details the harrowing personal journey of a young American woman facing seemingly insurmountable situations while living in the Middle East and EuropeAfter miscarriages and the loss of a child in childbirth on the island of Cyprus Susan seeks solace by creating art and recording her vivid dreams Through difficult life changes Cyprus's bloody coup and war in 1974 a rescue from a sinking ship in the Indian Ocean learning of her husband s secret life and surviving his deadly assault in Belgium she discovers her ticking clock is not the child she has failed to produce but rather the creative potential with which she can create a new life


10 thoughts on “The Lullaby Illusion

  1. says:

    'The Lullaby Illusion' by Susan JoyceI initially swithered a bit about this book unsure Swither is a Scots word meaning to move this way and that But I swither no Susan's adventures would be great as a swashbuckler movie though I doubt that anyone would really believe them How any one woman can get into so many scrapes get entangled with shady characters spies war high seas adventures and the like and come out of them and thrive makes absorbing reading In the course of being thoroughly entertained I have learned a few sobering truths about war what makes it how it is perpetuated and why I knew nothing about Cyprus apart from the line across the middle Now I know One day I hope that Susan publishes her research on the subject I am especially fond of the other world aspects the metaphysical dimensions of the tale I have vivid dreams which tell me to hold faith with higher truths I listen though not often enough And I found myself so grateful for the tale of Susan's success achieved in large part because she always had the wit to listen and follow her internal guidance Doing so has evidently led the author through adventures unscathed to a life of deep fulfilment and joy That in itself is a message worth listening to Thank you Susan for sharing your colourful experiences with us Fran Macilvey author Trapped My Life With Cerebral Palsy


  2. says:

    This skilfully written memoir is a complex web containing threads of intrigue life threatening incidents and moments of great poignancy and humourSusan Joyce begins by telling of her marriage to a man who she suspects might be leading a double life – one that is filled with mystery and sinister purpose She is young and naïve and copes with his strange behaviour but is deeply disturbed by his secrecyHis job causes them to move locations one of which is to Cyprus Susan describes the beauty of the country her lifestyle and development of friendships within the local and expatriate communities There is so much that seems idyllic there until the moment when the war breaks out I was gripped as I re lived through her eyes the political and combative events that transpired The traumas accounts of human suffering and survival are vivid and incredibly moving Susan also tells us about her personal trials and successes She recounts the physical and emotional agonies of multiple miscarriages the bonds and losses of dear friends and then the significance of her dreams Through her mixed experiences she begins to realise and celebrate her artistic talent her confidence and self belief There are so many twists and turns to this compelling story that at times it read like an espionage thriller than a memoir The combination of her powers of description and uality of writing made this a clear five star rating for me


  3. says:

    The reader is transported to the 1974 invasion of Cyprus where Susan and her husband Charles are caught in crossfire as they and their friends take refuge in a UN camp and eventually flee to safety However before boarding HMS Hermes they witness the horrific devastation of war on their former neighbours and their homesThe author realizes that the vivid dreams she has of her husband leading a double life are indeed true and they eventually divorce I felt so sad for her having suffered a series of miscarriages and the loss of a baby but her tremendous spirit shines through as she makes a new life for herself in GermanyChanneling her creativity into a series of batik paintings Susan's first exhibition sells out and she thrives amidst a wonderful cast of characters and several romantic liaisonsThis is a wonderfully uplifting memoir that I found intriguing from the outset


  4. says:

    Born in Los Angeles children's book author Susan Joyce is a creative dreamer and traveler who shares the amazing story of her adventurous life in her new memoirPeopled with many characters some famous there's even an Elvis sighting this memoir recounts the terrifying events of a military coup and Turkish invasion in Cyprus in 1974 on the foreigners and expats who were stranded thereWhat would it be like to be caught in the middle of a war that wasn't even yours? Joyce had a beautiful life until she had to abandon her lovely home in the paradise that was the island of Cyprus and become a border refugee dodging bullets flying overhead and fire spreading through the refugee camp The refugees caught between the Greeks and the Turks were helped by UN soldiers and were airlifted by helicopter to a British ship Joyce went on to live in Europe but later on she had to be rescued from a boat in the Indian Ocean A very wild ride indeedDreams news reports conversations travel descriptions and lots of conversations blend together to give a picture of the dramatic events at a time when the author was focused on her wish to have a baby after many miscarriages and a tragic stillbirth and her disintegrating marriage and suspicion that her husband of thirteen years was a spyHer awakening comes from the realization that she cannot have a baby and she needs to use her powers of creation in another way which she does very successfully Once safe in Europe giving up on her dream to bear a child she reinvents herself as an artist as she continues to travel the world


  5. says:

    I confess to never having read a book uite like this before It felt ever so slightly disjointed until I learned the rhythm and went along with the flow and storyline And what a story Susan has to tell Dreams and illusions there are aplenty woven into the fabric of the tale so that it almost comes alive in your hands I learned so much of her personal tragedy in the Cyprus crisis I myself was 31 at the time and her life both before and afterwards By the time that the Epilogue came around and detailed what had happened to all of her friends I felt that I had got to know them all so well and could shed a tear for her losses This is a magical and moving book written by an author who has demonstrably enjoyed her life to the fullJohn Searancke—ReviewerTenerife Island Connections


  6. says:

    There is a saying the world is your oyster suggesting the person is free to take any opportunity they choose that life has to offer Susan Joyce fully embraces the life opportunities that are presented to her Without giving anything away it is only the author’s belief in herself and her ability to trust and act on her intuitive feelings that carries her through the great the good the sad the fearful the adverse and the indifferent Would she have ever embarked on this journey had she known what life events awaited her when she met and within months married Charles and together experienced living in various countries absorbing new languages and cultures?The book is enjoyable on several levels through varying threads single married and separated life; living in new countries; experiencing a war and Joyce’s esoteric spirituality conveyed in her dreams and journalling Through self awareness this inevitably led the author to confront the possibility of lies in her world then beginning to see her world as it was not as she presumed it to be The the author saw her world objectively the wiser her choices became with her resulting actions having a positive impact on her lifeThe author’s lyrical writing style gives her work an intensity Sometimes it is an inner emotional intensity and at other times an outward looking evocation of time and place This enables the creation of a form of beauty not only of the fun and happy times but also from ugly or frightening events especially those experienced during her time of living through the 1974 Turkish invasion of CyprusI unreservedly recommend this book It brought to mind Carl Jung and his belief that one does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light but by making the darkness conscious to bring it into light The author’s ability to examine and make sense of all her experiences her willingness to share it honestly with her readers is what elevates this book above most other memoir


  7. says:

    I know Susan Joyce’s memoir THE LULLABY ILLUSION is non fiction yet it reads like fiction delivering all the tension and thrills one expects from a suspense novel In fact with the way it portrays the cold war era of the 1970s along with its vivid descriptions of traveling through Europe and the Middle East it reminded me of a Helen MacInnes cold war era suspense novel The places people and situations in this book are absorbing in the same way the situations and characters in a MacInnes novel are absorbing I would say Ms Joyce has led a very interesting life I’m glad she’s chosen to share this part of it with usMs Joyce employs a series of time switches in her memoir to help the reader understand and absorb the entire story but the bulk of the action takes place in Europe in the seventies It vividly chronicles her time spent in “paradise” as the author refers to Cyprus where she was living in 1974 during the Greek coup d’état and the Turkish invasion I was riveted as I read her harrowing and tense account of being caught between the warring factions She was fortunate to surviveThe heart of the story though is her reaction to the grim reality of coming to terms with betrayal by the person she should have been most able to trust her husband Was he a double agent? Did he have something to do with the war in Cyprus? Did she ever truly know him? In choosing how to react to these uestions and his betrayal she finds herself paying attention to her dreams and intuition which act as guides to finding self fulfillment and reinventing herself both creatively and personallyUltimately this is a life affirming story as a good memoir should be It shows how we can turn heartache into triumph It all depends on how we choose to react As I closed the book with a sigh of satisfaction I found myself pondering how life gives us many opportunities to become who we really are if we are wise enough to be paying attention


  8. says:

    This is a wonderful wonderful memoir expertly told and with bags of incident and finely judged humour Ms Joyce has a very vivid dream life keeps a dream diary I do that and one night dreams that she was a wild pinto running free across the Arizona desert Her friend asks if the horse said anything and Susan uips ‘Neighed a lot’ I also LOVED the birthday suit episode – won’t give too much away but the ‘it didn’t need much pressing’ line had me in fitsFollowing a divorce a series of miscarriages and a tragic still birth Ms Joyce realises that having children is not a guarantee of happiness – she achieves new fulfilment as a writer of children’s booksinspired by dream visits from a singing elephant This is no ordinary singing elephant either it sings in rhyme“An elephant won’t forget you when you’re happyAn elephant won’t forget you when you’re sad’Cause an elephant knows the secret is remembering it all—Learning from the good times and the bad”One gets the feeling that Ms Joyce has taken this to hearther story recalls a good and comfortable life suddenly turned bad when the 1974 Cyprus coup forces her out of her paradise home – her “lullaby existence” and into a hail of flying bullets And that’s just the start of her troubled travels – both in her extended globetrotting in the real world nearly drowned in the Indian Ocean and in the reflective travels of her dream world as she reflects on and learns to overcome each new challenge including finding out her hubby is a spy with both courage and wisdom ‘The Lullaby Illusion’ is an ode to the human spirit a testament to a life lived fully and well and made strong by the experience


  9. says:

    Susan Joyce’s ‘Lullaby Illusion’ is a truly fascinating memoir One strand details her travels and life in Europe with remarkable descriptions and a conversational style that effortlessly draws the reader into her world What an extraordinary and varied life she had It was certainly touched with tragedy as she suffered numerous miscarriages and the trauma of a stillbirth She was living in Cyprus at the time of the Greek Cypriot coup and subseuent invasion by the Turkish Army and was very lucky to escape with her life She also realises that her husband Charles is leading a double life and finds herself in danger from him However Susan somehow copes with this and emerges as a strong and self reliant woman building a new life as a successful artist The second strand explores Susan’s ‘dream world’ and her very strong intuitive feelings which she has learnt to trust and which she knows guides her path These are wonderfully interwoven into this amazing narrative showing that truth can be stranger and infinitely action packed than fiction At one point I realised I had tears running down my face reading about her dream seuence where she whispers ‘The Lullaby Illusion – life’s illusive song’ It’s a truly moving memoir and one which I highly recommend Worth every one of the 5 stars


  10. says:

    The Lullaby Illusion A Journey of Awakening by Susan Joyce truly pulled on my heartstrings I don't know what I was expecting when I first jumped into this one but what I came out with was awe and amazement So well written impossible to put down and truly left me pondering for hours after I finished reading itThis is a memoir which is the type of novel that I enjoy reading most You get a real feel of the author and the hardships she had to go through over the course of time The story mainly focuses on the Turkish Invasion in Cyprus in 1974 the military coup and the foreigners and expats who were left behind there Susan Joyce had a wonderful life but she had to abandon it in order to become a border refugee Eventually she ends up in Europe but ends up having to be rescued there as wellThere are so many aspects of this novel that go way beyond war Joyce realizes she can't have children as well so we get to see her struggle through that and how she copes with it She wants to continue to travel even after reaching Europe and we watch as she makes that a reality as wellThis storyline is not only heart wrenching It's uplifting as well I thoroughly enjoyed it and I admire Susan Joyce very much This is one memoir worth reading