Crossroads / Dawn of Humanity / Man vs Nature / Savage Land

The Man vs Nature Universe–What’s That About?

The way I organize my prehistoric fiction confuses people. It is confusing–no doubt! So I tried to clarify it during a visit to Debra Purdy King’s blog last year. If you didn’t read this over on Mystery Deb, here’s what you need to know:


Each book is part of a trilogy which is itself part of a bigger series called Man vs. Nature, a collection of trilogies, each dealing with a seminal point in man’s evolution when we could have–probably should have–become extinct.

The first trilogy, Dawn of Humanity, is set 1.8 million years ago and features Lucy, a Homo habilis. She and her kind were the start of man’s genus, Homo. They were the first creatures to create tools, routinely walk upright, and solve problems they’d never encountered. But Lucy had thin skin, no claws, and tiny teeth–pretty defenseless in a world of sabertooth cats and thick-hided mammoth. There was no reason to believe she’d survive much less thrive. In Dawn of Humanity, I show you how she took control of her world. Book 1, Born in a Treacherous Time, is published. Book 2, Laws of Nature, will be available July 10th and Book 3, Natural Selection, Winter 2022.

The second trilogy is Crossroads is set 850,000 years ago and features Xhosa, a Homo erectus. She and her kind were tough, resilient, brilliant for their time, and the inventor of many of man’s greatest creations–fire, clothing for warmth, and sophisticated tools. This also was the first of our genus to leave Africa and spread throughout Eurasia. The trilogy title, Crossroads, comes from that concept, following groups of Homo erectus from five different parts of Eurasia (and Africa) who come together in the Levant. All three books are published.

The next trilogy with the working title of Savage Land will be set 75,000 years ago, a time when Nature should have won the battle and man should have become extinct. But we survived. Why–you’ll have to read the trilogy to find out. It features Cro Magnon man. He had a bigger brain than even modern man, sophisticated tools, and advanced weapons. Unlike any before him, he buried his dead, had forms of art, decorated his body, and is considered by some to be a sub-species of modern man. I can’t wait to start this trilogy. This predecessor of us, with his advanced weapons, tools, and brain, promises to be an exciting story!

All of these trilogies together make up the Universe of Man vs. Nature. As a group, they deal with man’s evolving ability to solve problems, think critically, defeat enemies, pursue actions that are apart from instinct, and in general, facilitate our rise to dominance in the animal kingdom.

OK, I know that’s a lot. Any questions?

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular prehistoric fiction saga, Man vs. Nature which explores seminal events in man’s evolution one trilogy at a time. She is also the author of the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers and Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. Her non-fiction includes over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, reviews as an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature Summer 2021.


74 thoughts on “The Man vs Nature Universe–What’s That About?

  1. I thought I read your piece on Deb’s blog before, but as I read I wasn’t sure anymore. Either way, it is a perfect reminder and a great explanation of your books, trilogies, and series. Actually, if you haven’t already, I think you should add this description somewhere (as an introduction) on your books page.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’ve given me a new fascination with our early antecedents, Jacqui. I think I mentioned I’m (slowly) reading ‘Africa: A Biography of the Continent’ and I’ve reached the chapters that cover those stages of evolution. I keep having ‘aha’ moments reading the research and thinking about Lucy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good to hear–and thanks. It is interesting. I started out by wondering how the h*** we survived when we arrived on this planet, and then found it wasn’t just once but a bunch of times. Man is an amazing species.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. In a way, your organization reminds me of how Walter Miller arranged “A Canticle for Leibowitz,” except that he is moving into the future, all occurring in great leaps forward as humanity recovers (over centuries) after a nuclear holocaust. Do you know the book? It has lots of links to the Catholic Church.

    Liked by 2 people

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