Aztec Dawn: A tale of sacrifical murder, from Manhattan to Mexico

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9780473149529: Aztec Dawn: A tale of sacrifical murder, from Manhattan to Mexico

After being driven nearly to madness by suffering a lifetime of abuse from a cruel and violent father, John O'Reilly goes to Mexico City for some relief. There, in a museum attached to an Aztec temple site, John is introduced to the beliefs and rituals of that ancient people. His mind, unbalanced by his misery, eagerly embraces the Aztec philosophy that there can be no rebirth without death, and he conceives the notion that his father must die the ancient sacrificial way for he, John, to be given a new beginning in life. He meets Juan, an Aztec descendant of a priest who fled ancient Mexico City when Cortés and his conquistadors overthrew it in 1523. Utterly devoted to the ancient gods and the rituals that worshipped and placated them, Juan is forced to sell Aztec handicrafts to tourists to earn a living. Juan sees in this meeting an opportunity to revive the old ways. Perhaps then the gods would be happy and return Mexico to its rightful inhabitants.

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From the Author:

Aztec Dawn has the same theme of parental abuse and resulting violent behavior as my first novel, Afinidad, but also recounts the collapse of the Aztec empire in 1521 because of the invasion of the Spanish. The novel is split into two time spans, modern day Mexico and then back in time to the invasion. This is told from the perspective of an Aztec priest who is an ancestor of one of the main characters in the novel. All historical material in the novel is accurate. History is a huge interest of mine, mainly in the field of the British monarchy and the Roman Empire. The Habsburg empire is also a fascinating subject, covering as it does one of the longest reigning and far reaching hereditary monarchies in history.

From the Back Cover:

After being driven nearly to madness by suffering a lifetime of abuse from a cruel and violent father, John O'Reilly goes to Mexico City for some relief. He is introduced to the beliefs and rituals of the ancient Aztec people. His mind, unbalanced by his misery, eagerly embraces the Aztec philosophy that there can be no rebirth without death, and he conceives the notion that his father must die the ancient sacrificial way for he, John, to be given a new beginning in life.
In the city square outside the museum, he meets Juan, an Aztec descendant of a priest who fled ancient Mexico City when CortÚs and his conquistadors overthrew it in 1523. Juan listens with intense interest and excitement to the young americano's faltering tale of paternal cruelty and his belief that his father must die ritualistically in order for the son to have rebirth. Juan sees in this meeting an opportunity to revive the old ways. Perhaps then the gods would be happy and return Mexico to its rightful inhabitants.
The story goes back in time throughout the novel, taking the reader through the historically accurate Spanish invasion and conquest. The ancient gods are introduced, and the reader learns in detail of the savage rites that were practiced in their honour in order that the universe would continue to exist. But the reader learns also of the Aztecs' love of art and colour, music and dancing.
Eventually, the two men, now firm friends, travel down to Juan's home in the mountains of southern Mexico. Juan meets with other neo-Aztecs that silently form part of a group of political revolutionaries, the Zapatistas, and, emboldened by the Juan's renewed interest in the old ways, they begin to practice their ancient rite of human sacrifice.
But nothing changes. The existing regime lives on, continuing to oppress and exploit the native people. Juan, now a most desperate man, prepares to commit the supreme sacrifice, that of his own son. Will John, now happy and fulfilled, support his friend in this ultimate act of homage, or will he draw the line at the death of an innocent child?

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Kerri Louise Thomas
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Kerri Louise Thomas
Published by Booksurge (2009)
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