A hike with other kids through New Zealand's vast National Park turns into trouble when the group leader dies, and Rob and the other five teenagers must survive the harsh wilderness with little food and no guide."
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Grade 6-10. Rob's mother has recently died and the subsequent months have been the worst in his life. He and his father are unable to communicate; in fact, all his father ever says to him is "take it easy." When Rob, an experienced hiker, is sent on an expedition with five other teenagers through the New Zealand bush country, disaster strikes when their guide dies. Because Rob has not developed the courage to stand up to the others and insist they follow proper safety procedures, the six teens quickly become lost with little food. The remainder of the novel deals with their efforts to return to civilization and the personal growth they experience while struggling to survive. While readers might become distracted by the jumps in time, the story itself remains quite accessible. The emotions of these young people are realistically developed and the dynamics of the group are clearly expressed. The importance of friendship and finding one's own peace of mind is presented in a satisfactory manner. A good adventure novel for reluctant YA readers looking for an exciting and quick read.?Tracy Taylor, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A wilderness hike turns catastrophic for six New Zealand teenagers in this gripping, straightforward survival adventure from Hill (See Ya, Simon, 1994). When Rob and his camping companions wake up on the third day to find their guide dead, they panic and throw safety procedures to the winds; leaving most of their supplies behind, they head off in search of rescue. Rob, the one experienced camper in the group, is so angry and depressed over tragic events at home that he refuses to take charge until it's too late; by the time he's picked up, alone, five rainy, exhausting days later, he's broken more rules, survived flood and exposure, and left three of his fellow hikers behind with serious injuries. Hill doesn't delve very deeply into his characters, and, paradoxically, seems to consider Rob more heroic than reckless, but every brush with danger, every hour of sodden, muddy misery is so vivid that, like Ivy Ruckman's No Way Out (1988) or Will Hobbs's Far North (1996), readers will feel as wrung out as if they've actually been along for the ride. (Fiction. 11-13) -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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