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Out of the Wilderness

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  58 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Life in the wilds of Alaska is hard for fifteen-year-old Josh, and a budding friendship with a visitor from the city, fourteen-year-old Shannon, makes him long for civilization more than ever. Josh feels trapped in the cabin he shares with his father and his half-brother, Nathan. It is Nathan whose reverence for nature has exposed the family to the dangers of life in the w ...more
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published March 22nd 1999 by Clarion Books (first published 1999)
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Cinthia Ritchie
Aug 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read "Out of the Wilderness" on a warm summer night, and I huddled beneath the electric blanket because it wasn't summer, it was the middle of the winter and twenty below zero, and I was cold and the wind blew and the snow was that perfect lavender only found in Alaska in the deepest and darkest months of the year.
Deb Vanasse's young adult novel takes readers to Willow Creek, Alaska, where Josh lives with his father and older stepbrother, Nathan. The book opens with a dramatic hunting scene, w
Nov 01, 2012 rated it liked it
"Out of the Wilderness" by Deb Vanasse was a good book. I enjoyed the story line, because I was able to relate to the older brother Nathan. Nathan was a stubborn and strongwilled young man, which is exactly what I am. I like the fact that the story took place in the wilderness. "Out of the Wilderness" had many suspenseful situations, including Josh, Nathan, and their father almost being killed by a bear. The dialogue between characters helped me understand the tone of the converstion and set an ...more
Esther Somorai
I won this book from the author through GoodReads, first-reads giveaway. Thank you so very much.

Right off I like the cover and enjoyed the story of this family of a dad and his two sons, who are half brothers. The story tells of everyday life interaction, how they get along or don't. Learning to understand each other in order to survive in the wilderness of Alaska. There are some very tense scenes within this story. Some lessons are learned the hard way. I identified totally with the
Kathie O
Jul 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a Goodreads Goiveaway, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. All my life, I have wanted to visit Alaska, and I felt as it this book took me there. It will appeal to readers of all ages. While my grandsons are all too young for it now, it is definitely a book I will save for them!
Audrey Terry
I really enjoyed this book on a couple different levels. I don't know a whole lot about Alaska, but the idea of being out in the middle of nowhere is kind of intriguing. I'm from a small town, but it's entirely different to live with zero people around you, no electricity, and no running water. Personally, I think I'd probably get cabin-fever and go bonkers within a week. On the other hand, I really liked watching how the two brothers dealt with this. I empathized a lot more with Josh than I did ...more
Aug 27, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The publisher's comment calls it 'a chilling winter tale'... It's possible that they intended that comment as a joke, but I have not known publishers to know what humor is; so I'll say that the only way that this story is chilling is due to the fact that it's set in the Alaska bush in winter. With that out of the way, I can say that I enjoyed the story. It's more of an homage to Thoreau than a scary read, which some might glean from said publisher's comment. The loneliness of living in the wilde ...more
Jul 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
While the scenery is captivating the real heart of the story is the people that we meet. In one way or another I was able to identify with every character that we met; however, I felt most connected to Josh. I was able to empathize with his sadness, loneliness, anger, and sheer determination. Still, there is no way that I will ever be able to fully appreciate his situation. I can’t imagine living in a cabin that does not have running water, having to hunt for my supper and almost being killed by ...more
Big Book Theory
May 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Out of the Wilderness was an amazing read. Deb Vanasse's excellent story telling made me feel as if I could feel the bitter cold, yet experience the breathtaking beauty of Willow Creek. I felt immensely sorry for Josh from the beginning of the story and also saddened by the fact he had to be dragged along for the sake of Nathan. However, I also understand the dad's unwillingness to let Nathan go again, and the deep need to make up for 'lost' time. A story filled with genuine human emotions. It w ...more
Jen Lynn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
D.S. McKnight
Mar 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For me, Out of the Wilderness seemed to tackle the conflicts within a family while using the harsh Alaskan weather/terrain as a sort of staging area. The author did a wonderful job giving voice to her characters. While they weren't all necessarily likable, they were believable. I found Josh to be the most intriguing as he dealt with his father's shortcomings and his brother's idiosyncrasies. Definitely enjoyed the author's writing style.
Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an extremely well-written novel with characters so real that I felt a part of their heart and soul. I was ready to give it a five-star until the ending. Say what? I did come to care for the characters and would have liked to have seen a few of the loose ends tied up, even if still loosely, like some inkling of what direction they will go from there or have gotten some sense of the rationale behind why it ended where it did.
I expected more

I expected more. The story lacked any real depth, and although parts of it were interesting, I kept waiting to be drawn in. That never really happened - and then it ended.
Eugene Haskell

I felt that the story wasn't finished. It didn't seem to be realistic. No one would ever expect it to be safe to crawl into a bear's den.
Feb 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Braving the wilderness

This book looks at families, relationships & striving for independence in extreme conditions. It opens your eyes to what "living on your own" truly means.
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Eclectic author of 15 books published with six different presses: literary fiction, books on the craft and business of writing, narrative nonfiction, books for children and young adults. Alaska is home and inspiration.
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