Monday, January 27, 2014

Perfect Book for Frigid Temps - Call of the Klondike!

Call of the Klondike
by David Meissner; illus by Kim Richardson
168 pages; ages 9 and up
Calkins Creek, 2013

You don't have to read this book when the thermometer on the back porch reads double-digits below zero (Fahrenheit) - but wrapping up in a blanket and drinking hot tea does help set the mood for this arctic adventure.

This is the perfect book to put in the hands of a kid who loves Gary Paulsen (Hatchet), Jack London (The Call of the Wild), or Robert Service (The Cremation of Sam McGee and other poems of the Arctic wilderness). The cool thing: this story is true! And illustrator Kim Richardson is the great-great nephew of Stanley Pearce, whose Alaskan gold rush adventures inspired the book.

Stanley Pearce and Marshall Bond are two unlikely Cheechakos - both Yale graduates who just happened to be in Seattle the day in 1897 when a boatload of Alaskan prospectors docked, full of gold. Pearce and Bond borrowed funds from their families and headed north, over the Dawson Trail - which sounds much easier than it really was.

Richardson's photos and David Meissner's storytelling provide a compelling narrative of life in the Alaskan Gold Rush. It is filled with journal entries, letters home, and comments about Jack London, who dropped in to say "hi" when he was up there.

Fill your mug with hot cocoa, put on a parka, and read this book before the ice melts!

This is Nonfiction Monday. You'll find lots more great nonfiction books at the Nonfiction Monday blog. It's also Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday - and you'll find more good middle-grade and YA literature over at Shannon Messenger's blog. Review copy provided by publisher.


  1. LOVE the sound of this one! And hadn't heard of it, so thank you.

  2. This looks like a terrific read. Thanks for telling me about it. I definitely will be checking it out.

  3. It's cold in my part of the U.S. now so this would be the perfect addition to my reading list. Thanks for featuring.

  4. Oh my gosh. This is a must get and must read and must....share! Thank you for telling us about it.

  5. This is just the kind of book my Mom Person goes for! Maybe she'd even read it to me! We'll be looking for this one! Thanks!

  6. I enjoyed Hatchet and was a huge Jack London fan as a kid, so this sounds right up my alley! Thanks for the recommend, and happy MMGM!


  7. Definitely putting this on my to read list. Would go fairly well with Ice Dogs!