Source: Stephanie Parent – I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation
Publisher: Stephanie Parent
Series: Neima’s Ark #2
Edition: eBook, 94 Pages
Genre: YA, Post Apocalyptic, Historical
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble*
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Neima, her family, and her grandfather Noah have found themselves trapped aboard an ark as a great flood destroys all life in the world. As their time aboard the ark lengthens, food begins to run out, wild animals grow restless, and family tensions become as much of a threat as the flood outside. In the second and final installment of Neima’s Ark, the stakes are higher, the conflicts are greater, and Neima finds herself facing a choice as impossible as the destruction all around her.
Forty Nights is a continuation of the story begun in Forty Days, and it’s recommended that you read Forty Days first for the best experience. Forty Nights does, however, contain a character guide to refresh readers’ memories. The Neima’s Ark series is a historical, feminist reimagining of the story of Noah’s Ark rather than a religiously oriented one, and the novels are best suited for readers who are comfortable with new interpretations of biblical stories.
Forty Days, the first half of Neima’s story, is free on all major ebook retailers including Amazon.
The Neima’s Ark series has been a complete surprise for me. I don’t like religious books and Noah’s Ark is one of the most well known religious stories, surely that qualities as one of my “no-no books”. However Stephanie Parent takes a story I would have immediately shrugged off and turned it into a story with a surprising amount of reality and despite being religious based is not at all religious. Stephanie somehow created a paradox.
This is the second book, so if you haven’t read the first book go do that and come back.
The story picks up directly after Forty Days leaves us and Joran’s fate hanging. We are put right back into the middle of all that tension and with about 25ish days left in the story things have plenty of time to get worse before they ever get better. When I think of a word to describe this story I think, layers.
The tension is extremely layered. We get internal tension among the characters, tension relating to the animals, and tension from the storming raging outside. It’s not even supernatural elements, it’s all practical points like food and animal needs. The characters are also well defined and fleshed out. Noah (being the most notable of characters) is not as prominent in this story as it is Neima’s but he’s is completely human in his decisions and personality, which I must give Stephanie credit for because instead of making him an infallible character he has weakness and fragility just like everyone else. I love the relationship between Neima and Joran. It’s not some fairy tale perfect relationship, it’s a sweet love that has it’s faults but is just right for them.
I’m really satisfied with the way this ended and I’m definitely satisfied with the way it progressed. I’m just bit bummed out it’s over so quickly. I really appreciate that Stephanie took the time to developed the family and make the story more human and less fairy tale. Families fight and turn against each other, there is disbelief and self-doubt. Overall I think Stephanie handled the story with care, giving as much detail and accuracy as she could to the storyline and the time period. If you haven’t checked out Forty Days I really encourage you to do so, it’s free and in my opinion worth a try.