Dogsong

Written by Gary Paulsen

Reviewed by Nathan S. (age 11)

Dogsong is an exciting and interesting story that will keep you on the edge of your seat! This roller-coaster type story starts off in Eskimo country. As this story begins, a boy name Russell decides that he wants to leave his home and go to his neighbor's house. His neighbor is called Oogruk and he is blind, however, he still hunts and has an old dog sledding team. At Oogruk's house there are many furs and a fire. Oogruk did not mind Russell's visit. One day the two characters went out seal hunting because they were low on food and fat. Once they both get out on this journey Oogruk tells Russell that it is time for his (Oogruk's) life to end. Oogruk convinces Russell to leave with the dogs and leave Oogruk to die. Russell does what Oogruk requests which is to ride with the dogs along the countryside and become a man. Russell must teach the dogs that he is now their master. Russell finally starts on his adventure and on his way he hunts, builds his own shelter, and survives storms.

This book is action packed and interesting. My favorite part in the story was when Russell is hunting for deer or caribou and uses his sharp spear to kill the animal. Part of the book was disturbing to me because Oogruk and Russell are eating deer and then after that they drink warm blood like water. Finally, I was blown out of my seat when Russell tells how he survives through the snow storms. One of the awesome ways is when Russell has to kill a caribou and also had to battle the horrendous snow storms and put up a tent, make a fire and get situated!

I recommend this book to people who like thrilling and adventurous stories. In this story you learn how Russell survives all the storms and hostile environment. I thought this was exciting. I would recommend this book to 5th graders and above because it has very graphic scenes.

Nathan S. is a student in Mrs. Salewski's 5th and 6th Grade Class
2003-2004