Saturday, July 10, 2010

Lost in the Barrens by Farley Mowat

Awasin was as thin as a whip and he had shoulder length hair as dark as night. He was a boy of the Cree, an Indian tribe situated in the far north of Canada. Jamie was the exact opposite. He was five foot eight with blue eyes and fair hair. Both boys were free to roam the northern wilderness. Jamie had come to live with his Uncle, Angus, who was a trapper who lived on the shores of Macnair Lake. As soon as the boys set eyes on each other they instantly became friends. At the end of Jamie’s second summer with Angus, both boys faced a challenge they thought they could never endure.

While on a trip through territory of the neighboring Chipewayan tribe, Jamie and Awasin find themselves in trouble. Many miles from the nearest people, they find themselves stuck in a treacherous stretch of rapids. Their birch bark canoe is destroyed in the fury of the Kazon-Dee-Zee River. The boys make it to shore. With little hope they wait for the Chipewayans to come to their rescue. After many days, Jamie and Awasin find themselves stranded in the desolate barrens, the treeless plains of the far north.

With summer waning and winter approaching the boys must slaughter caribou for food and clothing. They must fight a towering grizzly bear, and find courage in the harsh wilderness if they are to survive the frozen north.

4 Stars

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