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Children's LiteratureAn Inuit boy, Alika, age fourteen, must find the courage to fend for himself and his ten-year-old brother, Sulu, when they suddenly find themselves stranded on an ice floe during a seal hunt miles from their village home in the Arctic Circle. For six months, as the floe drifts down the Greenland Strait, Alika calms his brother's fears, and taps into an inner strength that enables him to replicate the hunting and survival skills learned from his parents and village elders. At his side, as guardian, seal sniffer, body warmer, and most trusted friend, is his husky lead sled dog, Jamka. Theodore Taylor is a capable storyteller. He has packed this 240-page story with many dangerous moments, including a run-in with a polar bear. Middle readers will find this an exciting tale. But they will also learn interesting facts about Inuit life and thirty-two Inuit words, which are highlighted in the book's glossary. Taylor decided to write this novel nearly sixty years after learning that nineteen people, including George E. Tyson, captain of the polar exploration ship, Polaris, survived a six-month isolation on an Arctic ice floe in 1871. They drifted eighteen hundred miles before being rescued. 2006, Harcourt, Ages 8 to 12.