As the Japanese invasion begins in December 1941, as planes are bombing the village where Joseph lives, he is caught out in the jungle, unable to return home. He seeks refuge inside the huge and all-embracing roots of a great tree-a banyan or nunu tree-a tree the islanders believe is haunted by the taotaomona, the spirits of their ancestors.
As night falls, Joseph, frightened but exhausted, falls asleep among the tree's protecting roots only to be awakened by a procession of spirits carrying flaming torches and led by the ghost of an old man. The ghost tells him that the secrets of the ancient ocean navigators-the secrets of using the star paths to steer their canoes across oceans-have been lost to the people of Guam and Joseph must help bring them back to the island.
Brothers of the Fire Star is a story of courage and tragedy, of desperate survival, of trust and hope and love set among the tropical islands of the western Pacific. It is a plea to keep alive the priceless secrets of ancient seafarers and how their profound connection with the earth and the sky holds great lessons for us all.
Brothers of the Fire Star - Book Excerpt
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