Gr 2-4-The second book in this trilogy takes up immediately where Sailing for Gold (Aladdin, 2004) leaves off. Davey Hill, an 11-year-old orphan living in the late 1800s, is a stowaway on a ship headed to the Klondike, where he hopes to find his uncle. When he is discovered, Erik, a traveling photographer, pays his fare and takes him on as an assistant. The ship docks and then it's on to the long trail, an arduous trek on snow and ice that just about does the two hikers in. The fast-paced plot is interesting, and newly independent readers will appreciate the large type and the occasional black-and-white drawings. As with the first book, the tale ends abruptly, leaving readers dissatisfied and frustrated. Although Hopkinson does a fine job of capturing the grueling experience of the Klondike hikers, the book is weakened by its inability to stand alone.-Anne Knickerbocker, formerly at Cedar Brook Elementary School, Houston, TX Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
After stowing away on a ship to Alaska, 11-year-old Davey faces the challenges of living in Alaska, searching for his only relative, and climbing the treacherous and dangerous Chilkoot Trail. His friend, Erik Larsen, agrees to take Davey on as an assistant and together they prepare for the long journey into Alaska. The road is rough, but the promise of gold lures many, and Larsen wants to be there to document the Gold Rush. But nothing can prepare Davey and Larsen for the dangers of the road, and when Larsen takes ill, Davey comes near to quitting. Only his stubbornness and the help of a former adversary can save our young hero. With cliffhanger chapter endings, can't-miss drama and a captivating setting, Hopkinson brings her considerable storytelling and research skills to readers who are just beginning to read longer books. (author's note, Web sites) (Fiction. 6-9)
Deborah Hopkinson is the author of numerous award-winning children's books, including Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt, winner of the International Reading Association Award, Girl Wonder, winner of the Great Lakes Book Award, and Apples to Oregon, a Junior Library Guild Selection. She received the 2003 Washington State Book Award for Under the Quilt for the Night. She lives in Oregon. Visit her on the Web at deborahhopkinson.com.