Ruth Ann Hanley is an animal lover, photo-journalist, writer and recently retired attorney.
She has over fifty credits in national magazines including short fiction, photo journalism, humor and how-to. Animal pieces include those written about draft horses: percherons and black Welsh; goats; cattle; an old dog and an orphaned wild bird. No Pulling Back is her first novel and also her first story told through the eyes of a dog.
Inspiration to produce this story came from many sources. In order to write it, she needed some confirmation as to how animals see things. She found that in many new books by persons more scientific than she. However, she believes that many people throughout history have also had knowledge of animals' understanding, perhaps less literate, more simple people, those out herding sheep, or soldiers, or families seeking protection at night. Even saints. Certainly St. Francis of Assissi, whose statue graces many gardens the world over, loved all of creation, including a ferocious wolf. In fact, as the story is told, he crossed the language barrier between species as he spoke to the wolf and convinced him to accept food for peace.
To bolster her understanding of her body's response to healing she turned to the eastern healing practice of NAET which treats of energy frequencies and dissipates blockages in the human body.
Of course there are many sources for learning of the ancient games and practices of the Romans. Also many sources make it easy to follow the historical paths taken by John, Jesus and Mary. In 2011 the author herself traveled the Holy Land on pilgrimage.
Finally, Temple Grandin, a marvelous woman with autism and a doctorate in animal husbandry, recently added immeasurable insight to the interpretation of animal behavior.
All of these sources bolstered the author's courage to write this dog's story. For more information on these sources she has included a short bibliography at the end of the novel.
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Book Cover Designer: Jennifer Mayberry
Dog Photographer: Rachel Gieseke