Inspired by a bunch of my favorite writers like Tolkien, Orwell, Ray Bradbury, William Burroughs, Kurt Vonnegut, and Philip K. Dick, these are big stories to blow your mind. If you enjoyed books like The Road by Cormac McCarthy, Stephen King’s The Stand, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, then you’ll love this series.
Every civilization has ended in collapse. Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome. All were sophisticated cultures brought low by unanticipated forces greater than themselves.
What forces hasten the collapse of our civilization? Not nuclear war, or climate change, or even an asteroid strike.
For millions of years the supergiant star Betelgeuse has waited patiently on Orion’s right shoulder. Now its moment has arrived. It severs the single thread suspending Western civilization over a great abyss.
Something we take for granted disappears forever. Everything changes now that it is gone. Electronic equipment fails. Aircraft plummet from the sky. Motors cease to work. Distances that seem trifling by car become days-long slogs. Food and water are scarce. Forces awaken that have remained dormant for centuries. In a matter of hours, Western civilization teeters and falls.
James Muir is trapped in the midst of this huge calamity. Struggling to reunite with his wife and young daughters, he suffers bizarre, overpowering visions. A mysterious Voice berates him in ancient Egyptian. Amazed, he comprehends its command to embark on a quest for something it identifies only as ‘the Stone.’
Hunted by cadres of well armed, highly trained militiamen, haunted by the erosion of his own sanity, James flees urban warfare, riot and pillage. He joins a group of desperate strangers, united to escape a metropolis transformed into a burning, violent wasteland.
But what awaits them beyond the fringes of the city? The further they get, the stronger is the painful tug exerted by the Voice on James’s exhausted mind. As strangers grow into friends and lovers, James comes to realize that the thing called the Stone has a fanatical will of its own. Even if he survives the trek, he may not be strong enough to match the Stone’s baffling power.
The Betelgeuse Oracle is a sweeping saga of loss and heroism, mysticism and visceral horror. Reading this novel will change the way you see the world.
Advance Praise for The Betelgeuse Oracle
“Apocalyptic fiction has exploded with the turn of the millennium (see The Stand, The Hunger Games, Y: The Last Man, The Walking Dead) but Joseph Macchiusi has deftly pinpointed what would be the most catastrophic disaster of all…Try reading this beautifully written and gripping story and not have the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end, wondering, “What would I do?” A cautionary tale that is as terrifying as it is unputdownable.”
— Nikki Stafford, author of the Finding Lost series of books
“[Macchiusi] can write… A cool adventure story.”
— Brad Smith, author of All Hat
“Each new scene heightens the psychological intensity! A vision of what might happen to us all. The characters are vivid and compelling because they are real. They could be your best friends, the people you work with.”
— Christopher Martinello, author of Kennaway: The History and Archaeology of a Haliburton Ghost Town
“A great novel.”
— Vali Stone, author of Cops Don’t Cry
“A dark mirror to the future – what could be. Funny, disturbing…Not at all your run-of-the-mill fantasy.”
— Malcolm Campbell, science teacher
“I found the book to be a thought provoking read. I was captured from the beginning, and found that I couldn’t put it down. The character development is excellent, and speaks of a deep understanding of the human condition. After reading this book, I’m drawn to what comes next – I want the next book!”
— Kate Watsa, rural guerilla warrior
“The Betelgeuse Oracle channels the post-apocalyptic bleakness of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road and Hugh MacLennan’s Voices in Time. Macchiusi offers us a view of the triumphant human spirit. His description of the Kawarthas has such an impact that one will never look at ‘cottage country’ the same way again. A haunting read… Images of it continue to dance in my mind.”
— Jim Stewart, high school English Department head