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Wolves are an inspiration for Pa. man's book

June 28, 2009|By JULIE E. GREENE

FORT LOUDON, Pa. - Jon R. Parker has long had a fascination with wolves.

The 39-year-old Fort Loudon resident can't own one, so he has a malamute, which is about as close as he can legally get to owning a wolf, he said.

Why wolves?

"They're majestic. They're beautiful. They're wild and they're very family-oriented" in that they are loyal to their pack, Parker said.

Parker also has a love of writing and a longing to go to Alaska.

So he combined these loves into his first novel, "Miakoda: Power of the Moon."

The novel is about three siblings whose family moves from Chambersburg, Pa., to Alaska, where the youngsters go on an adventure and get lost, said Parker. The children in the book are named after his own children: Jonathan, Jennifer and Devon. The mother in the story is named for Parker's wife, Marni.

Miakoda is the name of the Alaskan town in Parker's novel. Miakoda is an American Indian term that means power of the moon. The term, according to Parker, also has an association in folklore to wolves, who are considered protectors of the forest.

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All of this comes into play in Parker's story, which he says he wrote in a week in 2002.

"I've always liked to write," Parker said.

At age 10, he was writing poems and short stories.

Parker, who drives a truck for Waste Management, is already at work on his second book. That one will be about a girl and a horse, both of whom were physically abused and end up bonding and, together, healing emotionally.

"Miakoda: Power of the Moon" was published through PublishAmerica and released in May.

The novel is available for purchase online through PublishAmerica ($24.95) and Amazon ($22.45). The novel also is expected to be available through local Waldenbooks.

Parker will sign copies of "Miakoda" from 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday, July 11, at Waldenbooks in the Chambersburg (Pa.) Mall and from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15, at Waldenbooks in Valley Mall in Halfway.

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