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KLONDIKE GOLD by Alice Provensen


by Alice Provensen & illustrated by Alice Provensen

Age Range: 8 - 10

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-689-84885-4
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Provensen shortens and fictionalizes the account of a participant in that turn-of-the-last-century gold rush, and readers will come away with not only an appreciation for the hardships those prospectors faced—and the massive quantities of gear and supplies required just to reach the remote Yukon, not to mention survive its rigors—but a clear feeling for the wild optimism that fueled the whole enterprise. She sandwiches the reworked narrative of young Bill Howell between two visual streams: A larger one with wide scenes of crowds on the move through boomtowns and frozen landscapes; and a narrow running strip that adds side details, with some explanatory labels. In the end, unlike many of their fellows, Howell and his buddy return from the gold fields weary, a little richer and with their enthusiasm undimmed. This commemoration not only opens a window on a historical era, it provides some sharp insight into, as the author puts it, the enduring “get-rich-quick American myth.” (source list) (Fictionalized nonfiction. 8-10)