About 10 years ago, I read a novel about a group of travelers who were on a quest. It started with a harem girl and her attendant eunuch. Along the way , they pick up other travelers , who also join in on the quest. In the meantime, there is a lady who notices that the plant life around her house is both growing and acting strangely, and trying to communicate with her. It was one of those books that are slow to get interested in, and I just kind of read it a bit at a time, at least until I got about half-way through the book. One morning, all of the folks that were on the quest turned up in the other lady's back yard--------- and they were actually all ANIMALS ! ! The harem girl was a monkey, the eunuch was an altered tom cat, and the flighty person named Blanche was actually a cockatoo. At that point, I stopped reading the book, went back and started over at the beginning, looking for any little clues that the travelers were actually animals. There were a few clues; but nothing you would really notice unless you were looking for it. Anyway, I finished the book, it was an excellent story, and got left when we moved from Idaho. I have tried to find it for the last 10 years (or so); but for the life of me, I can not remember what the name of the book was, and searches have not turned up anything even close. I have NO idea who the author was, or if they wrote any other books. I know it is a long shot; but we do have other avid readers on the forum, so maybe someone else has read this book. It is strange enough that anyone who does read it would definitely remember reading it .