There Will Be Bears by Ryan Gebhart, NOOK Book (eBook) | Barnes & Noble
There Will Be Bears

There Will Be Bears

3.7 3
by Ryan Gebhart
     
 

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Tyson is determined to hunt an elk — even if it means sneaking his grandpa out of a nursing home — in a debut novel sparked with dry wit and wilderness adventure. Thirteen-year-old Tyson loves hanging out with his roughneck Grandpa Gene, who’s a lot more fun than Tyson’s ex–best friend, Brighton. These days, Bright just wants to be seen

Overview

Tyson is determined to hunt an elk — even if it means sneaking his grandpa out of a nursing home — in a debut novel sparked with dry wit and wilderness adventure. Thirteen-year-old Tyson loves hanging out with his roughneck Grandpa Gene, who’s a lot more fun than Tyson’s ex–best friend, Brighton. These days, Bright just wants to be seen with the cool jocks who make fun of Tyson’s Taylor Swift obsession and dorky ways. So when Grandpa Gene has to move to a nursing home that can manage his kidney disease, Tyson feels like he’s losing his only friend. Not only that, but Tyson was counting on Grandpa Gene to take him on his first big hunt. So in defiance of Mom and Dad’s strict orders, and despite reports of a scary, stalking, man-eating grizzly named Sandy, the two sneak off to the Grand Tetons. Yes, there will be action, like shooting and dressing a six-hundred-pound elk. Is Tyson tough enough? There will be heart-pounding suspense: is Grandpa Gene too sick to handle the hunt, miles away from help? And, oh yes, there will be bears. . . .

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
06/01/2014
Gr 5–8—Since his dad lost his job, 13-year-old Tyson has been living with his parents and younger sister in his Gramps's house in Colorado. The two are unusually close, which is a source of stability for Tyson as he makes his way through the tough changes in his life—shifting family dynamics; the drifting away of his childhood best friend Brighton, who plays football now and runs with the popular crowd; and a first attempt at romance with new girl Karen. Then Gramps has to move to an assisted-living facility three hours away because his health is failing, which means a promised elk-hunting trip in the Grand Tetons is in jeopardy. Not to mention there's a malicious grizzly on the loose in the area. So the two concoct a lie about camping in Idaho in order to convince Tyson's dad to give him permission for what will most likely be Gramps's last hunting trip. Tyson's narration lends immediacy to the emotional development but can lapse into throwaway colloquialism ("I'm all whatever about it" or "I go, 'Yeah'"). The scenes surrounding the hunt and an encounter with the grizzly are the most dynamic in the book. It's here that the story really begins to grip. These depictions are not for every reader, though. The description of Tyson learning to field dress an elk is detailed and gory. Nonetheless, this should be an easy sell to younger middle schoolers, especially where hunting is a popular activity.—Bob Hassett, Luther Jackson Middle School, Falls Church, VA
Publishers Weekly
★ 02/17/2014
Debut novelist Gebhart reveals an uncanny knack for getting inside the brain of a teenage boy wrestling with changing relationships and an onslaught of disappointments. Thirteen-year-old Tyson’s onetime best friend is spending all his time with his football teammates, but that’s nothing compared to Tyson’s fury when his parents cancel his much-anticipated elk-hunting trip with his grandfather, due to Gramps’s health and grizzly bear attacks in Bridger-Teton National Forest. Gebhart gives readers lots to chew on, including Tyson’s realization that life isn’t fair, his recognition of Gramps’s frailty, and lingering questions about manhood. Will killing an elk, even if it means lying to his parents, make Tyson a man? (And can he remain a member of the Taylor Swift fan club?) Graphic hunting and field-dressing details may be eye-opening for readers who, like Tyson, have only hunted with a video-game controller so far. Fully developed characters, complex and realistic relationships (especially between Tyson and Gramps), and Tyson’s spot-on narrative voice—which balances faux bravado, risqué humor, and real emotional pain—make this story stand out. Ages 10–up. Agent: John M. Cusick, Scott Treimel NY. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
Debut novelist Gebhart reveals an uncanny knack for getting inside the brain of a teenage boy wrestling with changing relationships and an onslaught of disappointments. ... Fully developed characters, complex and realistic relationships (especially between Tyson and Gramps), and Tyson’s spot-on narrative voice—which balances faux bravado, risqué humor, and real emotional pain—make this story stand out.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Tyson is quirky, awkward and lovable; a perfect middle school boy. He is also, at times, laugh-out-loud funny, but his best qualities are his fierce love for his family and his unwavering desire to be true to himself. ... Occasionally salty vocabulary and adolescent innuendo are developmentally spot-on. A quirky, sweet adventure for middle school boys.
—Kirkus Reviews

Gebhart’s debut depicts the anger and emotion of adolescence without the angst; Tyson remains a likable oddball throughout. Unapologetic in his love of bears, Taylor Swift, and having his grandpa as his BFF, Tyson’s eccentricities serve both as strengths and challenges as he matures. What results is a compelling and heartfelt story with just the right amount of humor. This should appeal to fans of Jordan Sonnenblick and to middle-school boys in general. And don’t worry, there will, in fact, be bears.
—Booklist

Gebhart crafts a satisfyingly complicated realistic drama that deals with big issues. ... Tyson is a likable protagonist in a well-paced tale that will hold young readers in its grip.
—The Horn Book

Tyson eventually manages a thrilling and satisfying hunting excursion. In the end, this adventure story perfectly illustrates the complexity, awkwardness, and uncertainty of transitioning between childhood and young-adulthood.
—Library Media Connection

This charming coming-of-age story offers an elusive balance of humorous and poignant moments. Gebhart’s firsthand experience field dressing elk lends unique and dramatic details to the familiar story of a boy coming to terms with his beloved grandfather’s aging. Tyson is a likable protagonist whose transition from childhood to adulthood will be enjoyed by both boys and girls.
—VOYA

The book is strongly written, and Tyson’s emotional turmoil, which he glibly covers with barbed observations and self-deprecating humor, is painfully real. The gorily precise details of the elk kill and butchering also add compelling dimension to a familiar story of coming to terms with the debility of a beloved grandparent. Family stories and adventure tales are often relegated to separate pigeonholes, and this title offers fresh crossover appeal.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Tyson's narration lends immediacy to the emotional development... This should be an easy sell to younger middle schoolers, especially where hunting is a popular activity.
—School Library Journal

An engaging ... tale of two clean-boweled miscreants who steal away from the forces of authority to go hunting in the Grand Tetons of Wyoming. ... They emerge two days later, staggered by frights and adventures—and, in Tyson's case, newly wise about age and aging.
—The Wall Street Journal

Children's Literature - Remy Dou
Like most thirteen-year-old protagonists, Tyson struggles with his identity, no longer fitting in with the kids at school, including his best friend Brighton. While his classmates spend more time flirting with girls and playing football, Tyson still loves to proclaim his love for Taylor Swift (and her music, of course) and obsesses over an upcoming hunting trip with his grandpa Gene. Chaos reigns when his parents place Grandpa Gene in a nursing home for health reasons. His school grades drop and the elk-hunting trip of a lifetime is cancelled. Although Gebhart includes all the elements readers would expect to find in a good rite-of-passage tale, these present themselves as both formulaic and disjointed. As a character, Tyson never quite feels believable despite the hodgepodge of stereotypical teenage turmoil that makes up his personality, including the way he interacts with his little sister and parents. Grandpa Gene stands out as the strongest character in the book, offering readers dregs of intrigue smattered across this limp adventure. The contrived yet absolutely predictable personal growth Tyson experiences occurs over the course of a few quick pages leaving young readers with the sense that they would rather encounter a grizzly bear while elk hunting than be required to read this irrelevant tale. Reviewer: Remy Dou; Ages 8 to 13.
VOYA, June 2014 (Vol. 37, No. 2) - Joanna Lima
For as long as he can remember, Tyson Diggs has been looking forward to his thirteenth birthday. To mark the celebration, he will go on his first hunting trip with Grandpa Gene. To prepare, Tyson obsessively reads the book Grizzly Bears Of Northwest Wyoming and keeps an eye on news reports of hunters and campers attacked by a grizzly called Sandy. Tyson needs an escape too, from increasingly difficult schoolwork and the awkwardness of his first crush; his touchy parents who have been spread thin managing the household since Tyson’s father lost his job; and his former friend Brighton, whose new football teammates tease Tyson relentlessly. But when Grandpa Gene suddenly moves out of the family home and into a nursing home three hours away, Tyson is confused and devastated. The hunting trip is cancelled . . . or is it? Despite his failing kidneys and behind the backs of Tyson’s parents, Grandpa Gene and Tyson sneak off into the wilds of Wyoming to hunt elk. Tyson may not be tough enough to shoot and field dress an elk, and Grandpa Gene may not be well enough to handle the trip, but one thing is for certain: there will be bears. This charming coming-of-age story offers an elusive balance of humorous and poignant moments. Gebhart’s firsthand experience field dressing elk lends unique and dramatic details to the familiar story of a boy coming to terms with his beloved grandfather’s aging. Tyson is a likable protagonist whose transition from childhood to adulthood will be enjoyed by both boys and girls. Reviewer: Joanna Lima; Ages 12 to 18.
Kirkus Reviews
2014-02-05
Feeling abandoned by his two closest companions, 13-year-old Tyson just wants things to go back to normal—even if that means field dressing his own elk and fighting off a man-eating grizzly bear. When Tyson's best friend, Bright, decides he would rather hang out with the cool kids, Tyson reasons that he still has his grandfather for companionship. But when his grandfather Gene moves into a nursing home and Tyson's parents cancel their big hunting trip, it is almost more than Tyson can handle. With social pressures to fit in mounting and grades rapidly sinking, things are becoming desperate. Suddenly, the hunting trip is as much about saving himself as it is about taking down a six-point bull elk. Tyson is quirky, awkward and lovable; a perfect middle school boy. He is also, at times, laugh-out-loud funny, but his best qualities are his fierce love for his family and his unwavering desire to be true to himself. It is this inner strength that carries the story through some eyebrow-raising moments. While honesty is emphasized, the lies surrounding the secret hunting trip are brushed aside as necessary for the greater good. Occasionally salty vocabulary and adolescent innuendo are developmentally spot-on. A quirky, sweet adventure for middle school boys. (Fiction. 12-14)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780763670443
Publisher:
Candlewick Press
Publication date:
04/22/2014
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
331,181
File size:
802 KB
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Meet the Author

Ryan Gebhart says of There Will Be Bears, his first novel, "This book was inspired by a gig working at a hunting ranch in the Grand Tetons, where I got firsthand experience in field dressing an elk." Ryan Gebhart lives in Ohio.

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