Josiah's Reviews > Brian's Winter

Brian's Winter by Gary Paulsen
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Dec 08, 09

Read in December, 2009

This book is almost the equal of its predecessor Hatchet, and in my mind, to reach such a level of accomplishment twice is very impressive.

As with Hatchet, Brian's Winter is a powerfully evocative, supremely sensual experience, bringing the reader into a world in which the bitter frigidity of the cold, the mad panic of being run down by a furious five hundred pound moose, the deep, insanely driving hunger of days and weeks on end without proper nourishment, and the awesome splendor of nature, come to life in the mind's eye as realistically as if the reader themselves were out in the wild all alone, experiencing all of it personally. It's hard to deny that Brian's Winter, like Hatchet, is a beautiful and breathtaking survival story (while still giving it straight, with no fake adornments to pretty up the situation), but to me it has a crucial lesson to teach us all, even if we never spend a single day out in the wilderness ourselves: Life is about taking what comes and trying to survive somehow, even if the odds seem impossibly stacked against you, because ultimately that's all we can do. No matter how bad things get, the one constant is the neverending struggle to make it to another sunrise.

These intensely germane lessons are delivered as powerfully in Brian's Winter as they were in Hatchet. Brian's Winter truly is not a book to be missed, and its impact on my thinking will last for a very, very long time.

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12/05/2009 page 5
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