Linsey Ward's Reviews > Woods Runner

Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen
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's review
Mar 29, 2012

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bookshelves: realistic-fiction, historical-fiction
Read in March, 2012

** spoiler alert ** This is the story of Samuel Smith set in colonial Pennsylvania. His mother and father have been taken by the Indians and the British at the beginning of the Revolutionary War. A man named Isaac visits Samuel's home sharing the news of the first attack at Lexington in Concord. Olin, Samuel's father, shares the news with his settlement. Together they decide to take wait to hear more news before taking action. One night an attack happens while Samuel is away hunting and unable to protect his family. He finds shoe prints in the ground and follows them in order to save them. He comes across an Indian camp where he hears shots fired. He is spotted by two Indians. He is able to shoot one of them, but is knocked unconscious by the other. When he wakes a group of men have saved him. He decides to go toward New York City where his parents are prisoners of war. He kills the guards and saves his parents.
Gary Paulsen includes sections in almost every describing how conditions actually were during the revolutionary war. There is a section on communication, weapons, frontier life, the Hessians, orphans, and many more. The author includes real facts that could be utilized in the classroom. A teacher could pair this with a revolutionary war lesson to give students a sense of what a child went through and see it through 13 year old eyes.
This book does not include illustrations. The cover is a boy's silhouette in the woods with a rifle.

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