The legend of the Paradise fruit is only briefly mentioned in my novel, Desert Devil. It’s not explored in the book, but the tale fascinates me. I can imagine it being told for millennia over campfires in the desert wilderness, in isolated military outposts, and in bustling bazaars between sips of sweet mint tea.
A good story never grows old, and it raises as many questions as it answers.
How did Eve smuggle three fruits from the Garden of Eden? How small were the apples if she wove them into her hair, as one tale has it?
To whom did Eve give the fruits of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil? Were they the reason Cain and Abel fought, and Abel died?
Did Solomon really eat one of the fruits, and then, command the army of the djinn? Did Alexander the Great die in trying to eat one of the fruits?
And finally, is it true that the wizard who created the hidden valley of Shangri-la planted one pip from a Paradise fruit, and the tree that grew from it hides the entrance to the valley to this day?
Unfortunately, as far as I know, the legend of the Paradise fruits being smuggled out of Eden is one I made up. So, the good and bad bit of that is that we’re free to make up our own answers to these questions.
Making up legends is one of my favourite parts of writing speculative fiction. I start with a real world topic that fascinates me – like the history of the Silk Roads – then I start imagining the possibilities.
Do you have a favourite legend or fairytale? Is there a legend that you think ought to exist?
Desert Devil is out August 10, 2017