With all the books and movies centered on the doomsday prophecy of 2012, it’s hard to believe that there is an angle left uncovered. Author Julia Maganini found one such gap, and moved to provide younger readers with a fictionalized explanation of the prophecy and its potential consequences in Temples of the Mist: Mayan 6th Sun.

The book combines elements of science fiction and fantasy as it sends its characters on a whirlwind trip to the past in order to save the future.

The teens at the center of the story, Caleana and her younger brother, Marsh, are shaken out of their quiet life in Summerland by the news that their parents have just been killed in a plane crash near the Mayan ruins in Chiapas, Mexico.

Caleana bullies her way onto the trip to recover her parents, and brings along her young brother, her best friend and her new boyfriend. When they reach Mexico, Caleana finds that her mother’s body was not in the wreckage. This discovery, along with an unsettling vision in the Mayan temple, sends Caleana and her friends on an adventure back through time to save her mother from an evil king, and the whole world from imminent destruction.

Maganini does a good job explaining the circular notion of time, and how the past affects the future. And it certainly is refreshing to find an explanation of 2012 that contains some hope for the future.

Younger readers will like that the children of the story hold the key to the future, but the violence of the temple sacrifices and the disturbing images in some of Caleana’s visions make the story problematic for sensitive readers age 12 or younger.

» Temples of the Mist: Mayan 6th Sun

» By Julia Maganini

» authorhouse.com

» September 2009

» Trade paperback, 200 pages

» ISBN:  9781449026660

— Carol Ann Chybowski, who received a bachelor’s degree in linguistics from UCSB, is an aspiring author with short stories in the local anthologies A Community of Voices. The former Santa Barbara resident resides in Southern California.