Midwest Book Review
And the Stars Began to Fall
Madeleine S. de Jean
$25.00 Paper/$9.99 ebook
Fade in to a sky full of exploding, falling stars in Pylos, Greece in 1190 B.C. King Nestor's observation of this occurs on the anniversary of the 1214 Mycenae disaster.
Is this story sci-fi? Speculative fiction? Historical fiction? And the Stars Began to Fall refuses to neatly fit into a given category—and that is one of its pleasures, even though this could present a conundrum to libraries who like to neatly peg and file a book under one genre.
Little did archaeologist Margaret Benson know that her discovery of an ancient figurine would lead to knowledge of an ancient curse set to recreate history's disaster, warning her of her own death and events which will once again change the world.
As she embarks on a journey between past and present to uncover the truth about what caused the end of the great Bronze Age Peloponnesos society and what threatens her modern-day world, Margaret finds herself on a time-travel journey that holds portent for not just her own destiny, but that of all eras of history.
Readers anticipating an archaeological mystery or supernatural suspense story will find heavy doses of both in this book, as well as an alternate history historical backdrop that will intrigue sci-fi enthusiasts. Any singular reader of these genres may be surprised by the other elements which coalesce here, but this just makes the book a stronger, wider-ranging, less predictable, and thoroughly delightful story that will reach a large audience.
As the search for an incredible woman evolves into a magical journey capable of challenging its twenty-first century characters, readers will find the twists and turns delightful, the characters realistic and involving, and the story both thought-provoking and enlightening.
Who or what has determined and directed human affairs?
And the Stars Began to Fall's ability to weave historical influences and questions into bigger-picture thinking makes for an exceptional read. It operates on various levels of complexity, fueled by action and intrigue that keeps it a heady and involving read from start to finish, and is worthy of inclusion in sci-fi, alternate history, history, and thriller fiction library collections alike.