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Guest Post : Author Stephanie Parent

Today the Forty Days Blog Tour is making a stop at Jessy's Bookends with a guest post by author Stephanie Parent.


THE ANIMALS ON NOAH’S ARK

Which animals would actually have hitched a ride on Noah’s Ark? It’s a question you’ve probably never considered unless, like me, you’re writing a fictional version of the story. But once you start thinking about it, it’s kind of funny how


https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTjRQK1NRotuefyatS_UaplC5B5Atn8Eu_sgku5uyuH52KKpfI0

and

https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcS5z-yb0RaAdOwcsF_vpx2qQe-048t_XOZzd0qhlAO3S9mKMCCcVw

always appear in images of the Ark, yet we never wonder why


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and

https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRTHOcXkbigMknHh7fBkBaZMPaSuUK3x8Lkdp8Qu5m_IZH6zT5IPQ

are absent. The truth is that the story of Noah’s Ark is a bit hard to take literally, and for my retelling, I quickly decided it would make more sense to include only animals living in the area where I chose to set the story. Since I settled on Turkey (you can read more about that in the Author’s Note included in the book), that meant no giraffes (native to Africa only) and no monkeys (Africa and parts of Asia), as well as no polar bears or penguins!

Another interesting (really, I swear!) issue is whether certain domesticated animals were even around at the time of Noah’s ark. It’s not something we think about, but somewhere between the Neolithic and Bronze Ages, wild goats like this one

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f6/Bezoarziege.jpg/250px-Bezoarziege.jpg

were domesticated into the animals we pet and feed on farms and petting zoos today, like this one.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b2/Hausziege_04.jpg/240px-Hausziege_04.jpg

Cute, huh? :D

Of course, wild versions of goats, as well as sheep, cows, pigs, and other animals domesticated by the Bronze Age, still exist today, and these animals would have been included on the Ark as well.

And what about dogs, cats, and horses? While these animals were domesticated amazingly early in certain parts of the world—horses were domesticated in central Asia prior to 3500 BC, for example—I found no definitive evidence that they existed in Turkey during the Bronze Age, so I chose not to include them. Of course, there was no way I could list every single animal on the Ark as part of my book, so readers can definitely imagine wild dogs and cats on board if they like!

Forty Days (Neima's Ark #1) by Stephanie Parent
Release Date: 02/10/13
Pages: 125
Summary from Goodreads:
The entire village knows Neima’s grandfather is a madman. For years the old man has prophesied that a great flood is coming, a flood disastrous enough to blot out the entire earth. He’s even built an enormous ark that he claims will allow his family to survive the deluge. But no one believes the ravings of a lunatic…

…until the rain starts. And doesn’t stop. Soon sixteen-year-old Neima finds her entire world transformed, her life and those of the people she loves in peril. Trapped on the ark with her grandfather Noah, the rest of her family, and a noisy, filthy, and hungry assortment of wild animals, will Neima find a way to survive?

With lions, tigers, and bears oh my, elephants and flamingos too, along with rivalries and betrayals, a mysterious stowaway, and perhaps even an unexpected romance, FORTY DAYS is not your grandfather’s Noah’s Ark story.

FORTY DAYS is approximately 45000 words, the length of a shorter novel, and is the first installment in a two-part epic story. It does contain a cliffhanger ending.

Readers looking for a traditional, religiously oriented version of the Noah’s Ark story should be warned that FORTY DAYS may not appeal to them. The novel will, however, appeal to lovers of apocalyptic fiction, historical fiction, and romance, as well as anyone who’s ever dreamed of having a baby elephant as a pet.
About the Author

Stephanie Parent is a graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC and attended the Baltimore School for the Arts as a piano major. She moved to Los Angeles because of Francesca Lia Block's WEETZIE BAT books, which might give you some idea of how much books mean to her. She also loves dogs, books about dogs, and sugary coffee drinks both hot and cold.


Look for the title at Amazon / Kobo / BN

Blog Tour hosted by YA Bound.

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