The Fallen Stones By Diana Marcum

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The Fallen Stones: Chasing Butterflies, Discovering Mayan Secrets, and Looking for Hope Along the Way By Diana Marcum

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Book/Novel Author: Diana Marcum

Book/Novel Title: The Fallen Stones

 

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Summary

On a butterfly farm in the Maya Mountains, a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and author of the national bestseller The Tenth Island finds enduring hope during cataclysmic times.Atop a hill in the rainforest of Belize, next to the ruins of a fallen civilization, a butterfly farm raises the brilliant blue morpho.What starts out as the worst vacation ever turns into a quest to learn more about the first-of-its-kind farm when journalist Diana Marcum inadvertently discovers this wildlife sanctuary, which is supported by an international live-butterfly trade.She quickly becomes acquainted with Clive, the whimsical British millionaire whose childhood passion created an industry, and Sebastian, the Maya farm manager whose stern expression belies a soft heart. Before long Diana and her partner, Jack Moody—new to being a couple—have moved into a long-empty jungle house, cohabitating with bats, scorpions, toucans, iguanas, and the vulnerable but resilient butterflies.Just ahead, although they don’t know it, are a hurricane and a global pandemic.This warm, funny tale of finding a way forward when the world seems to be falling apart is filled with the beauty of the natural world and a heartfelt cry to protect it—beginning with butterflies.
In this day of bad news wherever we turn, it is very refreshing to read about people who care about each other and the survival of our world. I believe there are more people like that than the opposite which are the folks who stir up evil and destruction. Thank you Diana Marcum for sharing your thoughts and experiences over the past couple of years. It’s been a time that has been very hard for all of us and to read about an ecosystem as delicate as a butterfly’s and then to realize that we can all make a difference in their existence, well that’s refreshing and makes me feel relevant in this world. Now on to making a butterfly garden in my back yard
I would have enjoyed a lovely story about a butterfly farm, except the author had to insert frequent “climate anxiety” references and in the final chapter, reveals strong political opinions that felt extraneous to the story. Completely ruined it for me. Not everything has to push an agenda.
I left this book on the back burner for awhile because frankly, I’m a hummingbird person and have never been much interested in butterflies. When I realized butterflies and hummers have similar tastebuds I decided to finish reading it. I love how the author didn’t gloss over real-life relationships especially with those we have to share spaces with!I also loved the humor! And I fell in love with the kind-hearted Belizean people she met at Fallen Stones. This is not a genre that I normally read but I’ve got to say that I really, really liked it!

So wonderfully written, I couldn’t put it down…laughed, cried, howled, itched with bugbite sympathy… And appreciated the interwoven ecological truths of today’s state of the planet. Little practical glimmers of hope by creating small pockets of sanctuary for pollinators included. Just lovely.
I loved every aspect of this book although I wasn’t always sure about it. There was a moment when it felt a bit dry, but that may have just been me. The more I read, the more interesting and fun it became. I appreciated the author’s humorous take on herself and her willingness to both expose her fears and the courage to not let them get in the way of learning and coming to love even the less enjoyable aspects (living with bats & tarantulas comes to mind) of living on a butterfly farm in Belize. Her gift with words had me right there with her, imagining the stars she saw at the top of the hill, the beauty of dozens of butterflies flitting about. The reality of limited resources and living at the whim of nature. The author packed a lifetime’s worth of experience into this book and I am extremely grateful for all that she shared!

 

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