The Ark Blog Tour- Interview & #Giveaway

Interview with author Laura Liddell Nolen

1) Tell me a little about yourself and your writing career so far?

Ever since I was little, I’ve constantly made up stories in my head. I think everyone does that. But the older I got, the louder the stories became. So I decided to write one down.

When we were children, my brothers and I used to act out the stories we’d come up with. We were heavily influenced by space-themed movies and television, and especially by comic books, which our dad collected.

When I got to college, I wrote a play in one act on a whim, and it ended up getting performed informally by one of the theatre classes. It was a thrill like nothing I’d ever seen. I couldn’t believe other people were hearing a story that came from inside my head!

But I ended up taking a much more traditional route and became a lawyer. It wasn’t until years later, when I was pregnant with my first child, that I started writing again. I won a Work-In-Progress Grant from SCBWI, which really encouraged me to continue writing, and I eventually sent the manuscript for The Ark to Harper Voyager. Their UK office picked it up and published it this year!

2) Tell me a little about The Ark and the idea behind it?

The Ark is about a girl who can’t seem to get it right. Charlotte Turner has been behind bars, off and on, since she was twelve. Even before that, she felt trapped– hemmed in at every angle by her parents’ relentless drive toward status and achievement. But at least in juvy, people seem to get her. They call her by her chosen name, Char, and they even pronounce it correctly: with a hard ch, as in charred. Something that got burned.
Stop me if you’ve heard this one: world-weary criminal seeks out redemption and a better life, only to find that, given his status as a convict, his past will follow him wherever he goes. For some, there is no out.

Only in my book, the hardened criminal is a little girl. And instead of a life of crime and prison, she’s looking at a violent end in an oncoming meteor strike.

3) Describe the main protagonist Char in 140 characters or less.

Teenage convict seeking redemption. Spurned by the family she betrayed. Aspiring stowaway. Accomplished thief. Usually right.
4) Why should we pick up The Ark?

To feed your sense of adventure! I wrote the book to be as fun and entertaining as possible. Of course, it touches on some heavy subjects: the role of police in society, rehabilitation, and redemption, for starters.  If you end up considering those things when you read the book, so much the better.

The Ark is a book about starting over. Earth has just wrapped up World War III, and with the ink barely dry on the Treaty of Phoenix, humanity has one last shot at peace. We either cooperate long enough to escape to space together, or we die.

The idea that any one group of people is responsible for our planet’s ills seems crazy, but if we could hand-pick only the smartest and most personable among us, leaving everyone else behind, could we eradicate injustice? If there were no more land or oil to fight over, could we be done with war forever?

Or is the past not so easily left behind?

Thanks for having me!

The Ark by Laura Liddell Nolen
Published by: HarperVoyager
Publication date: March 26th 2015
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult


There’s a meteor headed for Earth, and there is only one way to survive.

With her criminal record, sixteen-year-old Char is never going to get a place on an Ark, one of the five massive bioships designed to protect Earth’s survivors. The Arks are reserved for the real goody-goodies, like Char’s mom, dad, and brother, all of whom have long since turned their backs on her.

With Earth on the brink of destruction, Char must use all her tricks of the trade to swindle her way into outer space, where she hopes to reunite with her family, regardless of whether they want to see her or not.

Once she arrives on the North American Ark, Char discovers that the remnants of humanity haven’t achieved the egalitarian utopia they’d planned for. For starters, the “Officers of the Peace” are anything but peaceful, especially since stealing a spot on an Ark is a crime punishable by death…


Laura grew up in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, where she spent an excellent childhood playing make-believe with her two younger brothers. The Ark is the direct result of those stories and a lifelong devotion to space-themed television. It received a Work in Progress Grant from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Laura has a degree in French and a license to practice law, but both are frozen in carbonite at present. She lives in Texas with her family.

Giveaway sponsored by the author and Xpresso Book Tours. Open to anyone who can read ebooks. Ends 30th September 2015

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thanks for hosting today, Megan! :)

  2. A great interview thank you. This promises to be an interesting read.

  3. book looks really intresting. will have to get it

  4. This book looks intriguing! thanks for sharing