By: Gary Paulsen
A thirteen year old boy, Brian Robeson, is taking a plane from New York to Canada to visit his father. On the way the pilot of the plane asks him to fly the plane but what he doesn't realize is that he was actually having a heart attack and soon dies. Brian now has to land the plane and does a crash landing into a lake in a Canadian forrest. He has very little food and suffers from minor injuries. When he recovers he finds wild berries which make him extremely ill but he finds rasberries later on which are much better. He then makes himself a shelter but a porcupine enters and he throws his hatchet at it. The porcupine then shoots it's quills and the get stuck in his leg. He then tries to make a fire and manages to do so with his hatchet and then cooks the turtle eggs he found over the fire. A couple days go by and a plane flies over but doesn't see him so he gives up and tries to commit suicide but fails. He then goes fishing and catches his first fish which he feasts upon. He also catches a foolbird which is his first actual meat so he is very alieved. While cleaning the bird, a moose attacks him and injures his ribs and shoulders. The very next day a tornado goes through his camp site and destroys his shelter. The tornade actually made the tale of the crashed plane come out the water which encouraged Brian. He then remebers about the emergency kit in the plane so after a few attempts he retrieves it from the bottom of the lake. He finds a freeze dried meal and an emergency radio which doesn't work unfortunately. As he is about to eat the frozen meal a plan lands in the lake coming to rescue Brian and he now knows it is all over.
Brian- this is the main character and is the one that survives the plane crash and then has to face all the hardships until he is recued.
Terry- This is Brian's friend back in New York who he used to ride bikes with all the time and he also appeared in Brian's dream and explained how to start the fire with the hatchet.
Jim- This was the pilot of the plane. He allowed Brian to fly the plane but had a heart attack and died, forcing Brian to try and land the plane as best he could.
Man vs Nature- Brian had to fight against the brutality of Mother Nature to survive and even though he had his rough times, he succeeded.
Always stay positive- There was points when Brian just wanted to give up but he kept having dreams about the people back home which encouraged him to keep pushing forward and not give up.
The hatchet- This one tool symbolized life becasue it was used if everything that Brian did, and without the hatchet Brian probably would have died.
The plane- The plane symbolized Brian's trip out of civilization and into the wrath of Mother Nature. This crash and experience gave Brian a whole new understanding of the world he lived in and also taught him valuable life lesson's.
Overall this book was very interesting and i enjoyed it a lot. Some moments were a little slow but it picked up a lot. I also enjoyed it because i can relate to how he experienced how brutal Mother Nature can really be. I aslo love the outdoors and all of this occured in the wilderness. All in all this was a fantastic book and I would recommend it to anyone as a good read.