Why Ravens in the Brightest Kind of Darkness series?

Ravens

Why did you feature ravens in your BRIGHTEST KIND OF DARKNESS series?

I’ve always been fascinated by ravens, by their perception in society and the fact they’ve been depicted in old drawings and stories since the beginning of time.

In researching ravens, I fell in love with their duality; every culture has a mythology about ravens. Some associate ravens with evil, believing them to be a witch in another form, others believe them to be the devil’s minions. Then there are the cultures that feature the raven either as the creator of their world or as having had a hand in it’s creation like creating the sun or finding water. Other cultures see ravens as tricksters with the talent to predict the future and the ability to bring messages to the gods. Ravens were also considered birds of war by some, who watched the ravens and used that knowledge to help predict a battle’s outcome.

While ravens feature in just about every culture, their roles spanning from one extreme or the other, one aspect is definitely true in every culture; their presence is never innocuous. It always means “something”! 🙂

And this is why I choose ravens. They have such a rich and varied mythology. I wanted to put my own spin on it in BRIGHTEST KIND OF DARKNESS.

Raven Facts: Wiley, Smart, Opportunistic, Loyal, Territorial, Playful and Affectionate

  • Ravens can solve complex problems, like figuring out how to add rocks to a deep jar in order to raise the water level so they could get to the meat floating in the water. Ravens are called “wolf birds” for a reason. They’ve been known to lead wolves to injured (potential) prey so that they can also share in the feeding. Ravens have worked together as a team. One pulls on the dog’s tail and gets the dog to chase after him, while the other raven raids the dog’s bowl for kibble.
  • Ravens mate for life and hold funerals for their dead.
  • Ravens can mimic human speech and other bird calls.
  • Ravens can live in extreme temperatures from the tundra to the desert.
  • The oldest raven in the wild lived to be 17. The oldest raven in captivity lived to be 44. He was a Tower of London raven.

Ravens in Action

How to tell a raven from a crow: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=guBwMUAWAJI&NR=1&feature=endscreen

Ravens are much bigger than crows. Here you can see a raven and a crow side by side to see the difference in their sizes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZyBNWVD70w&feature=related  (around 2:38-2:40)

Ravens can be very playful and gentle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAj_SkR8lJY&feature=channel&list=UL

Ravens can talk in various voices: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7GusdG_SSWw&feature=relmfu  AND http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zA9KTw07Ax0&feature=relmfu

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