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Ishtar's World

Ishtar grew up in the safety and comfort of a palace.  But when his father orders him to join a caravan, he discovers a whole new world.  Here are some photos of what that world might have looked like!

Two hump camel

Musa is a bactrian camel like this.  Their humps don't store water, but rather fat, which is one of many adaptations that allow camels to stay cool in hot climates. However, the water is created when the fat is burned when the camel has no food.

Three camels
Bactarian camel

Who wouldn't love a face like this?  Ishtar does!  Not only does he get past the peculiar smell, he actually starts thinking about the camel as his friend.

Man leading two camels

Carvans were often hundreds of camels long to protect against bandits that roamed the desert.


Millet for breakfast, millet for lunch, millet for dinner!


Asher's Oasis is one of the many made-up places in the story and on the maps, but the most important places really existed!


Quicksand is more dangerous in movies than in the real world, but it really exists in desert regions, and really can be fatal.

Mud City 3
Mud City
Man pulling camel

Camels have minds of their own. Do you suppose that's why their handlers are called "camel pullers"?

Rider on camel on beach

Although both types of camel were used in caravans, this dromedary was more common.

Sand dunes

Caravans such as the one described in Ishtar's Odyssey were common for transporting goods from China to Palestine and back again.


Like in the story, caravan days started long before sunrise and traveled without stopping until long after sunset. Camel pullers were lucky to get four hours of sleep each night.


The occasional oasis (probably not quite as resort-like as this!) gave the caravan something to look forward to.


Cobras like the one Ishtar faced occupied the many deserts of the region.

Mud City

Zilzele is a fictional town created for the story, but is based on many abandoned and decaying cities of the desert.

Med Town
Lakeside village

Finally, the Euphrates River! Who do you think was happier -- Ishtar or Musa?


Babylon was gone by the time Isthar passed it, but it was real, and in its day was a beautiful and amazing city.


One of the driest places on earth, the Wilderness of Death remains to this day a terribly dangerous place .

Sea of Galilee

But once across the desert you'll find the Sea of Galilee -- the beautiful and wonderous land of Jesus!

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