When a meteor crashes to earth near Roswell, New Mexico, in the summer of 1947, one boy's life is changed forever. Simon Cole, a 12-year-old Boy Scout, is on a rock-hunting expedition when the fireball screeches overhead and slams into the ground just beyond the horizon. Simon hikes with the rest of Troop 32 to the crash site the next morning, and together they make a shocking discovery. What happens next, though, vanishes from Simon's memory. Only a pair of grainy black and white photographs-taken by Simon at the crash site-preserves the truth about a vast government cover-up that will claim the lives of many. The two photos, filed away as part of Project Genesis, survive decades of intrigue, all the while finding their way into the hands of Attorney General Bobby Kennedy, Marilyn Monroe, and Marilyn's sey, Bible-toting next-door neighbor, among others. In the summer of 2011, Simon Cole, w a U.S. senator nearing retirement, has been researching 1947, what he calls the lost year, in the hopes of finally discovering what happened. He receives help from a ragtag group of survivors, including Roger Smith, a mortician who was prounced mad in 1947 for telling the truth and was locked away in an asylum; Number Four, a former government operative, w in his last days, hoping to absolve his guilty conscience; Carol Sw, an abductee who discovers a secret facility near Groom Lake, Nevada, and the time-manipulating Hub that powers it; and Andrew Jackson, a Vietnam vet willing to put his life on the line for humanity. After Senator Cole's own secretary returns the photos to him, she helps close the loop. She also teaches him something about his quest. The past belongs squarely in the past. The future is what matters.
Duke Woodrick was born in Santa Monica, California, in 1945. He grew up in Venice and now lives in Henderson, Nevada, with his wife, Marjorie. In the Beginning: Project Genesis is his first published novel.