THE CURSE OF THE VIKING GRAVE by Farley Mowat

THE CURSE OF THE VIKING GRAVE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

An unnecessary sequel to Lost in the Barrens (1956) and an anticlimax compared to that book, The Black Hole (1963), and the author's other excellent adventure stories set in the wilderness of northern Canada. In Barrens, the Scotch boy Jamie and his Cree Indian friend Awasin had been lost for a winter in the Barrenlands and finally rescued by Peetyuk and his Eskimo tribe. Here, Jamie, Awasin and Peetyuk make plans to go trapping and then in the summer to return to the region to investigate what they believe to be evidence of Vikings. Much of the territory is the same, but this story is padded, not so much with fresh adventure, as with dreary anecdotes and dialogue. Awasin's sister is foisted off on the expedition, and despite the accounts of her athletic prowess as well as physical charm, readers are likely to agree with Jamie that she doesn't belong on this trip. The boys should be approaching the adult years, but sound younger when they talk, particularly when they are around the girl -- Jamie is schoolboyishly clumsy and inexperienced about addressing her; Peetyuk, who wants to marry her, carries on an adolescent flirtation while the other two give him a dreary razzing. The mixture of dialects makes the book especially dismal.

Pub Date: Aug. 18th, 1966
Publisher: Little, Brown