I’ve begun researching North American pre-contact history more than a decade ago, after spending some years with the Classic Ancient Mediterranean.
From Republican Rome and their resemblance of democracy I was hurled straight into the Great League of the Iroquois, studying their wise and amazingly detailed constitution.
Fascinated, I couldn’t help comparing both political structures, finding a few resembling points between the two. The articles, excitedly typed on the subject, I cannot find today, which is a great relief – I wasn’t mature enough to write on such matters ten years ago.
Well, a decade later, after years of research and creative writing, and the less enjoyable struggle with the publishing industry, I finally have something to present to the world. The “Mesoamerican Saga”, composed of two series – “Pre-Aztec” and “The Rise of the Aztecs” series – is covering a period untouched by historical fiction so far.
The famous “Aztec Empire” is known to us mainly through its encounter with Cortez and his conquistadors. But what happened before? How a great empire came to be an empire?
The intriguing world of pre-contact Mesoamerica I found staggering with its beauty, complicity, its colorful diversity and the intricate relationship between people and states. It was a different world, as alien to ours as any place from the outer space. And yet, it was not different at all, populated with normal regular people, with their basic urges, needs, ambitions and desires. Different customs, different laws and traditions, but still the same men and women, struggling to make their lives better, to stay loyal or go with their hearts, facing contradictive choices, forced to chose sides from time to time.
It was a fascinating challenge and I enjoyed every minute recreating this world through a series of action-adventure books, which are based on an extensive, a very thorough research, but which are full of fictional characters, busy making history along the real-life historical ones.
As for the fierce democrats of the Great Lakes, well, they are the next project.
Authors historically read a great deal. Their base psych depends on constantly expanding not only vocabularies, styles, and ideas, but also their knowledge of their craft. So it’s unusual to find another author that provides a writer the joy of ‘losing oneself in the story’. Over the years I discovered several such authors; Edward Abbey, Larry McMurtry, and John Nichols.
Zoe Saadia has now been added to that short list. Her style, story development, and writing craft has enchanted me and allowed those ‘lost moments’ that are precious to my being.
Zoe writes in a genre I would never — I repeat, never purposely seek out. Historical fiction I avoid like the plague. Ordinarily the author requires the historical event to mask their inability to develop an original story. Not so with Ms Saadia. All of the stories set in a historical era have been created from original thought. The backdrops are accurate, perhaps some of the events as well. Her stories are a delight. Starting in the Pre-Aztec series and continuing through the Rise of the Aztec series. Each novel stands alone and will mesmerize you with the character development and storylines. This isn’t really a review of her novels but of her as an author. A CUT ABOVE!