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Discussion Starter #1
Since the assignment for next Friday (June 12) is the last section of the book, I don't know if there's any point in making this thread spoiler-free. But if you read this before you finished, I don't want to give anything away.

My main question here would be, what did you think of the reveal of the Ark explanation? Did you have it figured out by now, or were you surprised? It's always a tricky for an author to plant just enough seeds to make the reveal an "aha!" moment without either making it too obvious or making it seem like it comes out of left field for no apparent reason. I certainly don't want to get into the trap that M. Night Shymalan got into where people are now expecting a twist and being mostly disappointed by it, but I also want to retain a sense of mystery throughout my books, even though they are thrillers, not mysteries.

Also, does this section of the book seem tacked on or an appropriate ending?
 

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I think that the explanation built very well on what was revealed earlier in the book.
I enjoyed the idea of this immense structure built underground. It kinda freaked me out to think of Noah and all of those animals being in the dark the whole time, though. I felt like the real aha moment of the book was the discovery of the second exit out of the cave.

Have you worked with limestone formations?
Do you have a website where I could see a rendering of the Ark?
Have you been to all of the places that you wrote about in The Ark?

I like the ending and the resolution. It was very satisfactory. It gave me hope of a sequel without the loose ends of a 'to be continued' ending. I also liked the last part where you explained some of the technology and what was real and what was fiction. It answered some of the questions I had in previous sections.

EDIT: I found the answer to one of my questions on the other thread with spoilers allowed. I will post there later, when I've reflected more and have better quality feedback.
 

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I liked it, Boyd.  I had an idea what it was, but I didn't know exactly how it would work.  I also liked the ending.  It was enough to give resolution to everything, but it didn't seem to drag it out.  I liked that the relationship was kind of unresolved at the end.  I hate when things end up too perfectly :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks, Frojazz and Marianne!

I've never worked with limestone formations, which would be a more likely place to find
a cave like the Ark. That's what makes it somewhat miraculous, that a cavern like that could form inside a shield volcano like Mt. Ararat.

I'm a terrible artist, so the Ark only exists in my head (and in text form, of course!). But I do have an excellent idea of what it would look like, and I would love to see a visual representation of what Locke and the others saw the first time it was revealed.

As you mentioned, I discussed my travels in other threads, but I'll repeat it here. I live in Seattle, and I've been to all the US cities I describe. I've never been on an oil platform, but I worked for Mobil Oil in a west Texas oil field one summer in college, so I'm extremely familiar with the smell of crude. I've never been to Armenia or Turkey, but I've been to over 30 countries in my life, which I think gives me a sense of how different other countries and cultures can be. Then I can fill in the facts with what I've learned on the Internet or through books.

Relationships, especially long-distance relationships, can be difficult to keep intact. Locke is a globe-trotting adventurer, so it'll be hard for him to settle down with someone, particularly a globe-trotting archaeologist. That doesn't mean they can't get together for some nookie when it's convenient, but exclusivity doesn't seem realistic.
 
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