With Gaea, author Robina Williams joins the latest trend and goes green.
The book begins with a man dragging and kicking the body of a woman inside a ditch. Gaea, the Earth goddess, is unconscious, weak, and in severe distress due to men's constant brutal abuse and disrespect regarding nature's cycles and equilibrium. The animals of the forest are in awe at the scene unfolding in front of their eyes.
Quant comes into the scene disguised as Leo. He observes Gaea's condition and decides to help her. Together they go for a walk to the friary. During their walk Gaea complaints bitterly to Quant about men's selfish and reckless behavior and the suffering of her plants and animals. She also shares with Quant her idea of “how to teach men a lesson” they won't forget. Men must be stopped or better still get rid off once and for all!!!!! After all, the world was a better place before the Almighty created His beloved creatures, humans.
Quant listens to Gaea and tells her he shares her concerns for nature, too. However, he will show to her that not all men are reckless and disrespectful, and that some do care about nature and are doing their best to makes amends for the mistakes of the entire human race. Their visit to the friary was a refreshing experience for Gaea.
Gaea and Quant go to heaven where she has a meeting with the Almighty. There she continues her bitterly protest against humans. She states her case and requests permission to avenge her animals and nature. She wants humans wiped out of the entire planet! God reminds her that vengeance belongs to Him alone and he will not allow her or any of her family members to interfere with His plans for humanity. However, He grants her some lead way to teach men a lesson without causing too much damage.
Meanwhile, at the friary, Father Polycarp (Poly), the new guardian, announces his planned “green campaign” for the friary to the other brothers after one of their meals. This idea of having a garden with their homegrown fruits, vegetables, and some flower beds, at first, is not well received by the brothers. Most of them grumble, but are reminded by Fr. Polycarp of their vow of obedience. They all complied and adhered to Poly's guidelines for their “green campaign.” However, once they started to enjoy the fruit of their labor, the fuss is replaced with joy and gratitude.
During the rest of the story the reader will be taken to worlds known to humans only through tales, legends and myths. Or are they truly hidden from humans? The author's creativity shows an image of heaven never seen before. A place where saints have dragon pets that keep them busy and alert; Saints and other departed ones using their talents to fulfill the tasks assigned to them by their Creator, and Saints telling tales of their experiences as guardian angels and humans' silliness.
But not all places are pleasant like heaven. Gaea and Quant will be traveling to deep and frightening places where the condemned souls are constantly tortured with no way out, except upon the termination of their sentences. However, those places are inhabited also by some of Gaea's beloved family members. Together with Quant she travels from one pantheon to the next gathering allies and developing a plan that will satisfy her desires to take care of men and stay within the boundaries established by the Almighty. During their traveling Quant accompanied Gaea in his angelic form, a Seraph. Everywhere they go, Quant is looked at with suspicious eyes by the others. They know who he is and are wondering: why is he traveling with Gaea? How much authority do they really have on the scheme? Will Quant be influencing their decisions or maneuvers? All these questions will be answered as the reader travels along with Gaea and Quant through mysterious places and meet Gaea's family.
The end of the book is a celebration of victory and a waking call to humanity. I applaud the clever way in which the author incorporates today's concerns for the environment and weaves them into a story with elements from the world we know and the forces governing it, which are beyond our human understanding and comprehension.
Gaea is different from the two previous books in the Quant series. This one is an entertaining and innovative story that creates awareness of how our human behaviors affect other life forms sharing the planet with us. If we all do our part and measure up to the task, maybe we will receive an invitation to join the celebration at the end of the book.