The Actual Star by Monica Byrne
Hardcover – Harper – Sep 2021 – 608 pages
The Actual Star takes readers on a journey over two millennia and six continents, telling three powerful tales a thousand years apart, all of them converging in the same cave in the Belizean jungle.
Braided together are the stories of a pair of teenage twins who ascend the throne of a Maya kingdom; a young American woman on a trip of self-discovery in Belize; and two dangerous charismatics vying for the leadership of a new religion and racing toward a confrontation that will determine the fate of the few humans left on Earth after massive climate change.
In each era, a reincarnated trinity of souls navigates the entanglements of tradition and progress, sister and stranger, and love and hate – until all of their age-old questions about the nature of existence converge deep underground, where only in complete darkness can they truly see.
The Actual Star is a feast of ideas about where humanity came from, where we are now, and where we&;re going – and how, in every age, the same forces that drive us apart also bind us together.