Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 8 to 12
- Grade: 3 to 7
Now in paperback! This stark and commercial survival story is a modern-day Hatchet.
Less than 48 hours after twelve-year-old Chris casts off on a trip to sail down the Alaskan coast with his uncle, their boat sinks. The only survivors are Chris and a boy named Frank, who hates Chris immediately. Chris and Frank have no radio, no flares, no food. Suddenly, they've got to find a way to forage, fish and scavenge supplies from the shore. Chris likes the company of a curious friendly raven more than he likes the prickly Frank. But the boys have to get along if they want to survive.
Because as the days get colder, and the salmon migration ends, survival will take more than sheer force of will. There in the wilderness of Kodiak, they discover a bond they didn't expect, and through it, the compassion and teamwork that might truly be the path to rescue.
About the author
IAIN LAWRENCE grew up moving all over Canada with his family. He's worked in logging, fishing, and even as a forest fire fighter, before studying journalism in Vancouver and working at newspapers for ten years. Today, he lives in the Gulf Islands with his companion, Kristin, and their dog and cat. He is the author of fifteen books for young readers, including this one, and has received many accolades, including the Governor General's Award and the California Young Reader Medal. He invites you to visit him online at www.iainlawrence.com. The author lives in Gabriola Island, British Columbia.
PRAISE FOR The Skeleton Tree:
"The skeleton tree and a bear that seems to stalk the characters give the story a dark and foreboding tone. This is not a typical survival tale . . . the focus is on the rocky and evolving relationship between the two boys. Though Frank is cruel and Chris is innocent, readers come to understand that each boy is much more than he appears. . ." --Starred Rview, School Library Journal
"Fans of Hatchet and Lord of the Flies will be drawn to this harrowing survival story from Lawrence (The Winter Pony), which offers psychological suspense and action in equal measure. The boys' exploration of rugged territory and the mysterious 'skeleton tree' with coffins in its branches neatly parallels their individual quests to make sense of recent losses and the lives they have left behind." --Starred Review, Publishers Weekly
"Unsettling and compelling, a gripping, evocative read." --Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews
"Lawrence's firsthand knowledge of his setting brings lush, exhilarating vibrancy to this excellent survival story." --The Toronto Star
"Readers will anxiously be turning pages to see who survives. With great action and a twist at the end, this book will appeal to mature readers ages 10 to 12." --The Calgary Herald