Johnson, Terry Lynn. Ice Dogs. Houghton Mifflin 2014 279p $16.99 ISBN 978-0-547-89926-8 ms/hs Realistic fiction E-BN
Victoria wants to buy some dogs from a neighbor who may be getting out of the dogsled racing business. She sets off with her dogsled team to try. This is an unplanned and unannounced run. As she cuts cross-country, she rescues a city boy who crashed his snowmobile. A blizzard arrives. Starting out with sarcasm and open animosity, Vicky and Chris eventually learn to appreciate and depend on each other’s skills and knowledge.
While this is a well written sled-dog story, it is also a gripping winter survival story. As the humans and dogs tire, go hungry and get cold, their very survival depends on the efforts of all involved. The author obviously knows Alaska, sled dogs and mushing, but she also understands human nature. She also writes beautifully and powerfully. The reader is drawn into the story immediately and comes to care deeply for the characters, both human and animal. An exciting climax near the end of the book holds the reader to the end.
The characters are fourteen years old, so this title is appropriate for upper middle school into high school. It’s an exciting read.
Summary: Victoria is a musher. On an unscheduled run she rescues a snowmobiler who is injured, and then they get lost in a blizzard. The two, who manage to survive, learn to respect each others’ skills and knowledge. Lots of exciting action. Middle and high school.
Survival-Fiction, Dog sledding-Fiction --Joan Theal