Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Falcon Wild” as Want to Read:
Falcon Wild
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Falcon Wild

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  309 ratings  ·  88 reviews
"I back up as Cooper did and then sprint toward the edge. Just as I'm about to launch myself across the crevice, a hot wave of nausea grips me. I stumble at the last second. My leap is not enough to propel me to the other side. I reach for the edge.

And miss."

Thirteen-year-old Karma is lost in the backcountry of Montana with her falcon, Stark, and a runaway boy named Cooper
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published September 19th 2017 by Charlesbridge
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.18  · 
Rating details
 ·  309 ratings  ·  88 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Falcon Wild
An absolute delight to read!  
Thirteen year old Karma grew up at her Dad’s Bird Education Center in Montana.  She has been around birds of prey her whole life and wants badly to become a certified falconer.  
Right on the heels of an unscripted event when flying her gyrfalcon ( a rescue bird) named Stark, that leaves Karma injured, her parents decide the time has come to return the rescued bird back to it's original owners in Canada.
Karma is heartbroken and feels responsible for Stark’s behavi

Thirteen year-old Karma is helping her father with a demonstration of how amazingly well trained these birds are at their family’s Bird-of-Prey Education Center in Montana. Her gyrfalcon, Stark, is at her side. Her father has Gremlin, a peregrine falcon, perched on his fist and he’s talking to the crowd. She’s a bit nervous since this will be Stark’s first school demonstration with her, but she tries to slow her breathing down, maintain a sense of calm.

After the demonstratio
Terry Johnson
May 15, 2017 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
My book! Falcon Wild has been YEARS in the making - in fact it might have started as a germ of an idea when I was ten years old. I read Hawkmistress! by Marion Zimmer Bradley and became obsessed with wanting to own a bird of prey. Sadly, I was only allowed to have a hamster. But I never outgrew my fascination with raptors.

Update: Falcon Wild is a Junior Library Guild Selection fall 2017! I'm so thrilled!

Update #2: Falcon Wild was picked for Scholastic Book Fairs! I loved Scholastic books as a y
Apr 01, 2017 rated it liked it
Falcon Wild was a really nice story. It is a fairly typical survival story, but is made interesting by the addition of falconry. Falconry is something I knew very little about prior to reading this book, and I really enjoyed learning about it. The book is geared toward middle grade children, and I could see myself loving it if I was that age, but even as an adult it was enjoyable, and I will likely seek out some of the authors other books in the future. Thank you to Netgalley and Charlsebridge f ...more
***Note: I received a copy curtesy of Netgalley and Charlesbridge in exchange for an honest review.

Although it is a coming of age kind of story, and I am WELL past that period in my life, it gripped me good, enough to read it in one sitting.

The characters are well developed, likeable and identifiable with, the narrative is action filled, but also offers interesting and useful information about survival in the wild, birds and falconry, and wildlife in general.

The only thing I didn't like was tha
Clare O'Beara
I'm very impressed by this environment survival story, which contains copious detail of falconry. A young teen girl in North America comes of age through her ordeal when a family trip goes badly wrong. She has to leave her father who is injured and trapped in a car, with her little brother, and try to hike out for help. There is nobody for miles except a creepy teen boy hitchhiker and - somewhere in the sky - her snow-white gyrfalcon which escaped the crash.

Young or old, you will learn a lot, e
Feb 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Received this book as an ARC at a conference. Good adventure story set in the backcountry of Montana, with 13 year old Karma trying to find help for her father & brother, injured in an accident on a back road. Released in the accident also was her falcon, Stark, who is not fully trained but faithfully returns to her during her searches for help. Also out in the backcountry is a runaway boy, Cooper. Both teens show great ingenuity in getting rescued. Good characters, great setting. Back cover say ...more
Ms. Yingling
Jun 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
E ARC from

Karma works with her family's nature education business, and is hoping that she can become an apprentice falconer. She has a gyr falcon, Stark, but learns that the bird must be returned to its original owners. Her father and brother set out on a trip to Montana to hand off Stark, and briefly pick up a hitchhiker Karma's age along the way. Cooper is uncommunicative, and Karma's father is not pleased. After dropping Cooper off, the family turns down a road and finds that Co
Stephanie Shallcross
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Thank you @kidlitexchange for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own.

Falcon Wild is a fantastic book! I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I received it, and yet I was thrilled to sit down and find myself lost in 13 year old Karma’s story. Karma wants to be an apprentice falconer. She’ s trying her best with her first falcon, Stark, but it’s not going great. Things become even more difficult when Karma’s family discovers that Stark actually belongs t
Dena (Batch of Books)
Sep 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
I fell in love with Terry Lynn Johnson's books back when I read Ice Dogs a couple years ago. She writes amazing survival stories for kids ages 10-14. In both books, the main character has a strong bond with her animal(s).

Falcon Wild is about Karma, who works with raptors (birds of prey). On the way to return a falcon to its rightful owner, Karma and her family get into a car accident. She sets out in search of help and gets hopelessly lost in the Montana wilderness.

Along the way, a boy named Coo
Rosie Rizk
A modern day adventure, with magic that really exists.

This is one of those really good books that develops a great friendship based on survival, and at the same time, is also a coming-of-age book for all ages. The really great part, is that this is a modern day book, so for all those readers out there who hate fantasy because "it can never happen" - this is a part of the world that so few get to experience, but is totally possible.

I think this would be great for young readers, especially fans of
mindful.librarian ☀️
Sep 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
FALCON WILD is the must-read middle grade adventure story of fall 2017!

Thanks to the #kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book.

What a fabulous adventure story! I love everything about this book - female protagonist, unique premise, cliffhanger chapter endings, manageable length for middle grade readers, and most of all, the absolute perfection it will be for a whole class read aloud in any middle school classroom. As a school librarian, I can't keep Gary Paulsen books on my sh
Cassie Thomas
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Karma's life is "not-normal" as outsiders would see it. Her and her family are falconers, they raise raptors and teach others of all their beauty. Which means Karma and her brother are homeschooled until high school. When Karma is struck with bad news that they will have to return her falcon, Stark, she is devastated, but understands. Follow Karma's journey trying to return Stark and having to save her father in the process. All while finally making a friend and learning what understanding, fami ...more
Lauren Manning
Mar 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
I found this book unexpectedly satisfying. I am the last person you would consider as “outdoorsy,” yet, I found this book to be the right amount of adventure and pace to keep me engaged. I learned a lot about falconry, and found Karma’s way of life to be fascinating. Four solid stars!
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was an amazing read, but the ending is Such a cliffhanger!! I'm not sure of there's a sequel, but there should be!
Ruth Schiffmann
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love this book! It has characters who are unique, and real, and relatable, a captivating premise, and a survival adventure that makes it impossible to put down. Now I'm just trying to decide which niece or nephew to give it to.
S.M. Boren
Dec 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received this book from #kidlitexchange to read in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 Karma is a 13 year old girl who is raised and homeschooled and lives at The Birds of Prey Education Center with her mother, father and younger brother. She is excited that after this year she will go to a public high school. She is training a falcon named Stark; her family has found, and her father and her aunt found the bird's owner and Karma is forced to take a family road trip to ...more
Ellen Bickford
Feb 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great read aloud for upper ES. Short, compelling stories, & v interesting. I learned a lot about falcons and was entertained. ...more
Jul 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Good story of 2 kids who learn to get along to help each other survive in a wilderness and to rescue the dad and other child from their car accident.
Oct 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Johnson is wonderful at writing riveting survival stories, the kind of stories that instantly grab your attention with characters that you can't help but root for. I also love her settings with previous books being in Alaska and Falcon Wild set in the backcountry of Montana with all the hardships that nature can possibly throw in your way to overcome. Everything from hunger, wild bears, harsh terrain and unpredictable weather to an infection that is getting steadily worse. Always with this sense ...more
Stephanie - Books Less Travelled
I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. This in no way affects my review.

Cover: Beautiful
Rating: 4 Stars
Overall: Thrilling
Characters: Well Written
Plot: After a bad accident that leaves Karma and her father and brother stranded, it's up to her to find help, but can she trust the help she finds?
Page Turner: Yes
Series Cont.? N/A
Recommend: Yes
Source: NetGalley

Review: I enjoyed this one, I don't often read survival stories, and never one with falconry involved, but I loved
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to the author for a copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
FALCON WILD by Terry Lynn Johnson is fast-paced and action-packed, with a resourceful female protagonist, and all condensed into 170 pages to appeal to a wide age range. I learned so much about falconry, but the adventure kept the focus on the story, not the facts. Highly recommend for MG collections!
Laura Gardner
Sep 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 for Falcon Wild by Terry Lynn Johnson. Thanks to @kidlitexchange for this free review copy. All opinions are my own.
Karma has been homeschooled all her life and helps her family run a Bird rescue center where she demonstrates beginner falconry using Stark, a Gyrfalcon she has come to love. On a trip to return Stark to the original owner, however, her father's van gets into an accident and Karma must leave her injured father and young brother behind to go get help. What hap
Anni Welborne
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Years ago, I met a falconer and his birds at a medieval re-enactment event, and it made a huge impression on me. I was fascinated! Such small birds, most being smaller than the common crow, and yet so very powerful! Thus, I was very much looking forward to reading Falcon Wild, and I was not disappointed.

This book opens with young teen Karma is helping her dad demonstrate these amazing birds at their education center. Karma’s gyrfalcon, Stark, is the centerpiece of Karma’s life. However, while tr
Elite Group
Sep 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Can you tame a gyrfalcon?

Karma’s parents run a Birds of Prey Education Center in the Beavertree National Forest, Montana. Since a very young age, Karma has been allowed to work with the raptors.

Recently added to this collection is Stark, a gyrfalcon. Karma had found the emaciated bird on the side of the road and with nursing and tender loving care, she is now able to show Stark, and with her father, giving exhibitions at the centre.

Karma has developed a deep and special relationship with Stark
Aug 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Falcon Wild (Hardcover)
by Terry Lynn Johnson
Terry Johnson admits to have researched this book not telling the story from personal experience. Like Gary Paulson, in Hatchet this book looks at the abilities of an individual to survive in the worst of times.
Karma is a young girl who is homeschooled and lives to help her family with their Birds of Prey Education Center. This is the last year that she will remain at home, next year she will go to high school, and apprentice with her aunt to learn
Mike Koellhoffer
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: won
Terry Lynn Johnson's "Falcom Wild" finds 13-year-old Karma living on a bird sanctuary in rural Montana. Almost at an age when she can begin her falconry apprenticeship, she has given her heart to a found falcon named Stark. When Stark's original owner is located, a heartbroken Karma leaves with her father and younger brother to return the bird to Canada. On the back roads after a wrong turn, the van has a blowout and flips. With her dad pinned in the car, Karma must fight the elements and wildli ...more
Nov 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a fun, fast read. It came to our library in our last Junior Library Guild shipment and I️ selected it to book talk at the middle school. I️ loved Gary Paulsen growing up, and this makes for a good read alike. There seems to be a lack of YA survival stories that aren’t dystopian, so this was a welcome change. I had no previous knowledge of falconry and found myself looking up photos of the various bird species and searching YouTube for videos of lure training. I did appreciate the author ...more
Mar 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
At first I thought this might have been a similar story to A Kestrel for a Knave but any resemblance is only slight, seen in the change in Cooper's attitude and demeanor.

Karma dreams of two things - being an apprentice falconer, and being a normal girl, with friends and sleepovers and all the normal stuff kids do in high school - but sometimes it seems that only the first might be actually achievable. And then the falcon she's rehabilitated is reclaimed by the original owner. En route to Canada
Hannah Fjeld
I just read Falcon Wild in one sitting, straight through, because I could not put it down. Much like Johnson's novel Ice Dogs, Falcon Wild is a fast-paced survival adventure that gives the reader a window into a sport that involves deep connections between humans and animals---falconry, in this instance.

I'd recommend this book to readers who like Jean Craighead George, Gary Paulsen, and other works of adventure and survival. I especially loved learning about falcons and other birds of prey, and
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Ebb and Flow
  • Missing Mike
  • Sit
  • The Train of Lost Things
  • Elephant Secret
  • Chase (Chase #1)
  • Mine!
  • Holly Farb and the Princess of the Galaxy
  • Mucus Mayhem (The Almost Epic Squad)
  • Lifeboat 12
  • Don't Tell the Nazis
  • A World Below
  • Star Scouts
  • Wings of Olympus (Wings of Olympus #1)
  • Oculum
  • Fourth Dimension (The Rule of Three, #4)
  • A Royal Guide to Monster Slaying
  • Inkling
See similar books…
Terry Lynn Johnson writes outdoor adventures inspired by her own team of eighteen Alaskan huskies. Her passion for adventure has provided her with a rich background to write from.

When she's not writing, Terry enjoys hiking, snowshoeing, and kayaking. She works as a Conservation Officer (Game Warden) in Whitefish Falls, Ontario.

She is represented by Caryn Wiseman of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency

News & Interviews

They’re baaaaaaack! Young adult vampires, that is. Fifteen years after Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight took the world by storm, we’re seeing a brand...
33 likes · 13 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »