Phobos: Mayan Fear by Steve Alten

Third volume in his Mayan doomsday set – there is another book alluded to at the end of this one, so he’s not done.  The first book in the series as I recall was straight doomsday stuff, with some fun SF touches.  The second is a continuation of that, building up the characters that with be needed for a successful conclusion to the Doomsday event on the Mayan Calendar.  This books builds on that, and introduces even more of the Mayan mythology about not only the Popol Vuh, and 2012, but also the ancient beliefs of the Mayan, Aztec and Olmec. This one I found confusing – Alten’s last book before this was not a part of his usual fare – MEG  (the ancient megaladon series) or Domain (the Mayan set) – it was a religious book about his studies of ancient Jewish wisdom, and what it meant for mankind.  I never was able to read more than a small part.  This book brings in some of that mysticism, and combines it with the Mayan prophecies about 2012, and the ancient race, the Nazca drawings, and time-travel – lots of it.  It gets confusing, since one of the characters used a different name through part of the book, channeled an ancient Mayan god, reached out into an inner consciousness higher plane, and spoke with people present and past and also showed up before he was born.  That everyone involved takes all this in stride is hard to swallow esp. as it  leads to a bunch of ET stuff, etc.  Although I enjoyed it, I thought the first book, Domain, was better, and that this one relied way too heavily on time-travel paradoxes and the ancient beliefs and less of his characters, etc. But, if you don’t mind some grand conspiracy theories, and I mean GRAND, and a lot of whisking back and forth without dates at times to anchor which time period you are in, this one’s for you.  As you can see by my rating, yet notes on the book, I was conflicted about it.  It took a while to get through, but some of that may have been a need to stop in the middle for two days, and my short memory span, so that things got confusing for me, as I struggled to remember what was going on and who was who.  You need to be sharp for this one!

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