The Rocky Mountains

The Rocky Mountains

by Larry Bograd

Fearing they will be sent from a loving foster home back to their abusive mother, three children hide out in a secluded spot on Oregon's coast, trying to find food and shelter.  See more details below


Fearing they will be sent from a loving foster home back to their abusive mother, three children hide out in a secluded spot on Oregon's coast, trying to find food and shelter.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Holcomb's poignant debut novel is a survival story out of the Boxcar Children genre, but with a sad modern twistit's their own mother from whom the children hide. Rather than let Children's Services rip them away from a stable foster family and return them to their abusive parent, Jessie Cloud and her younger sister and brother run away, up the Oregon coast. Struggling through tide pools, up cliffs and over sand dunes, they seek refuge under a giant chinquapin tree, Jessie's secret hiding place. At first, the gutsy heroine shoulders the responsibility for the survival of her weak, asthmatic sister and her silly little brother. But weathering the crisis teaches resourcefulness to all three, as supplies run low and they must forage for fruits, oysters, fish and berries. Jesse may liken their situation to that of hermit crabs ("like us, always living in somebody else's house"), but with new emotional maturity, the trio begins to move from a position of powerlessness to one of inner strength. Though some may find the book borders on the Pollyanna side, the direct, appealing plot line, a tangy Oregon seashore setting and a proper focus on childnot adultpoints of view more than compensate. Holcombe's ending is fittingly nebulous, but her clear messagethat the three siblings will survive no matter whatwill be inspirational to readers. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)
Children's Literature
Perhaps no ecosystem in North America offers such awesome vistas as the Rocky Mountains. This rugged landscape truly represents the spine of the Northern Hemisphere. Split by the Continental Divide, the Rockies include over fifty peaks that ascend to 14,000 feet or more. A land that incorporates great diversity of climate, fauna and flora, the Rocky Mountains stand out as premier landscapes of America and Canada. This fascinating book reviews the varied elements of the Rocky Mountains. An analysis of the diversity of areas such as alpine forests, sub-alpine topography, mountain valleys and grasslands is presented in a thorough and descriptive manner. The book also includes beautiful photography of aspen forests, mountain peaks and glacial lakes. These sumptuous visuals, linked to a worthwhile text, offer an insightful look at a gorgeous, timeless and threatened environment. A part of the "Ecosystems of North America Science/Ecology" series, this book will help students better understand a system that they will hopefully visit at some time in their lives. 2001, Benchmark Books,
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 5-8Jessie, Toady, and Allie Cloud are foster children, happily living with Mom and Pop, a loving couple, outside of Portland, OR. Then a woman from Children's Services calls and tells them that they will be moved to the city to be closer to their mother, who has a drinking problem and is sometimes abusive. Jessie, 12, determines that they'll run away and hide in her special place under the branches of a chinquapin tree. Their survival adventure includes walking along dangerous cliffs, stealing fire from sleeping campers, and expert foraging. Ultimately, the ordeal teaches the children that they can't make it alone and must return to their mother's care if the state requires it. However, Jessie cherishes the love of her foster parents and learns that, like the hermit crabs she has seen on the beach, the siblings could be "In someothers' shells, but in charge of their lives." A handful of taut scenes propels readers through an unevenly crafted plot. Despite an unremarkable third-person narrative, a few vivid images shine through. The Cloud children are reasonably well developed, but none of the supporting cast emerges fully and the social-service agency appears to be thoroughly villainous. Readers will find this survival tale entertaining, though it can't compete with those by authors such as Gary Paulsen and Jean Craighead George.Carolyn Noah, Central Mass. Regional Library System, Worcester, MA

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Product Details

Cavendish, Marshall Corporation
Publication date:
Ecosystems of North America 3
Product dimensions:
8.31(w) x 10.32(h) x 0.44(d)
Age Range:
11 Years

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