|The Legend Behind Desire Me by Robyn DeHart
For thousands of years, people have been intrigued by the concept of a utopian society with its perfection, peace, and harmony. This interest in utopia has fueled an enduring fascination with Atlantis. The legendary lost continent has been capturing people’s imaginations for centuries, dating all the way back to Plato when he first wrote of it in 348 B.C.
In Plato’s writings, he provides clues to where this perfect city lay beyond the “Pillars of Hercules,” and explorers/historians/adventurers? have long since tried to interpret his words to locate the land. The common interpretation says that the Pillars of Hercules must have been what we call the Straits of Gibraltar today. But there are many other theories on the location of Atlantis, and modern scientists still study the legend. Turn on the History Channel almost any weekend, and you can find mention of Atlantis, in both historical and modern quests.
Legend has it that Poseidon, the god of the seas, created Atlantis to honor himself and there fathered the ten kings who would rule the land. He chose for a wife the mortal woman Cleito, and to protect her, he built five concentric circles of canals and land But eventually corruption and greed overtook the Atlanteans, and Zeus in anger, caused a great earthquake that caused Atlantis to sink to the bottom of the sea, never to be found again.
Many Greek myths mirror Biblical stories, and it seems clear that Atlantis is similar to the story of Noah and the great flood; an angry God, disappointed in his people over their disobedience, caused destruction to punish them and teach them a lesson.
What Plato probably intended to be an allegory has sparked human imagination and been the subject of much research. One of the more famous texts came from an American politician in 1882. Ignatius Donnelly published Atlantis, the Antediluvian World, and theorized that Atlantis was the cradle of civilization. His theories became the most influential of their day, and his book went on to be a huge bestseller. Surprisingly that book is still in print today.
Donnelly’s belief that Atlantis gave birth to modern civilization provided direction for my version of the Atlantis legend. He suggested that people had left Atlantis and settled in other lands like Egypt and South America. It was this ideathat sparked my imagination. What if Atlanteans had escaped before the destruction? People who wouldn’t succumb to the greed so they fled before Poseidon’s retaliation.
At the time of Donnelley’s book, the general consensus was that Atlantis sat near the Azores Islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean so it seemed believable enough to have them sail north and land in Great Britain. So that’s what happened to the decedents of Atlantis in my novel.
But I also wanted to take a new spin on the Atlantis myth so I added the legendary Fountain of Youth. What if the fountain in Poseidon’s palace held a mystical water that could cure disease and halt aging? Thus was born the elixir which Sabine and Max must keep from the nefarious villain. Add in an ancient prophecy that could destroy not only them but the entirety of England, and you’ve got a recipe for adventure with a heavy dose of danger. Of course, all that danger is balanced out with plenty of personal chemistry and a whole lot of romance. But for that, you’ll have to read the book.