This post is part of Jacqui Murray’s book launch.
Jacqui Murray took twenty years to write Born in A Treacherous Time. One might think that’s a long time but then the setting of her novel goes back 1.8 million years. Yikes!
Drawing from insights from various fields in paleo sciences and history the novel takes us into what survival and living everyday must have been like during this period in the hot, dry savannas of East Africa.
Lucy, whom you may remember from To Hunt a Sub shows both ape like and human traits. She exhibits empathy, kinship, responsibility, inquisitiveness and tenderness. In her efforts to belong into her new group Lucy confronts jealousy by the female members who disapprove of her going out to hunt. (Not a female thing to do).
The hunt plays a major role in this novel where Lucy – sometimes stalked by predators, sometimes herself the predator – encounters life and death situations. Murray excels at describing the different hunts and the rituals attached to them. I found these aspects of the novel to be very informative as well as adventurous.
Murray has a way of placing the reader right there in the jungle following Lucy in her will to survive. Right there with her in the climatic changes, witnessing man’s first weather forecaster. You are running/jogging/racing alongside Lucy. Learning how her group communicates. You admire her creativity and passion to solve problems and invent tools. Admire her knowledge of plants and their healing properties. You root for her. She is our pre-historic heroine!
We are far, far away from online shopping, walking on the moon, finding cures for diseases, building high-rises and even the invention of the wheel. Born in a Treacherous Time is a testament to the greatness and dominance of man against nature.
This is a novel which filled me with gratitude and respect for my ancestors and their resilience. To somewhat quote Jacqui Murray in an interview with Tina Frisco:
Murray treats early man with majesty and nobility.
Available at: Kindle US, Kindle UK, Kindle Canada