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Klondike Gold Hardcover – October 25, 2005

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 10 years
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (October 25, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689848854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689848858
  • Product Dimensions: 12.3 x 9.2 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,988,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 3-6–Provensen relays the riveting story of a bored dry-goods employee who drops everything and heads for the Yukon Territory when struck by gold fever at the turn of the 19th century. He and a friend cross the country, outfit themselves in Seattle, and continue the trek north on water, over mountains, and through seasons to the Klondike River. Each spread is divided horizontally into thirds; a band of the text is sandwiched between the primary scenes on the top and a lower border of related information and images. The Caldecott-award winner's oils are reminiscent of, but more rugged than, her illustrations with her late husband Martin for Nancy Willard's A Visit to William Blake's Inn (Harcourt, 1981). The cities are populated with teeming crowds and puffing factories in contrast to the lonely camps in the stark wilderness, although the beauty of those outposts is revealed as in the scene displaying the Northern Lights. Readers will be fascinated by the one-year supply list (800 lbs of flour, 200 lbs of beans) and the stairs of ice carved in the steep slopes; saddened by the animals that had to be abandoned on the arduous ascent; and intrigued by the travelers' ingenuity. The prospectors' drive–and disappointment (when half of the fortune sinks in a thawing river on the return home)--is palpable. This first-rate adventure mingles suspense, history, and detailed depictions of mining in a story that is sure to be a hit in the classroom and under the covers.–Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4. Provensen's newest picture book highlights a gold rush that may be less familiar to American children than its California counterpart. Supplementing a fictionalized first-person narrative with horizontal sidebars containing additional facts and artwork, the author focuses on restless shopkeeper-turned-prospector Bill Howell, who an introduction suggests was a historical figure. In both text and pictures, Provensen excels at highlighting engaging details about Howell's journey, particularly the arduous logistics of transporting a year's worth of supplies into the remote Yukon Territories. At times, though, key background information seems lost in the currents of Howell's immediate experiences, and some readers may feel that Provensen's characteristic folk-art-style paintings, though bustling with energy, don't sufficiently zero in on her protagonist. Still, the subject ties in well with several social studies thematic strands, and the large-format design invites children into the chilly landscapes and rowdy encampments to share in the buoyant (if often short-lived) optimism of those who struck out for Yukon gold. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book makes the history of the Gold Rush come alive. My grandfather made this trip 5 times and it becomes real when I read it to the grandkids. They see what he went through. Too bad he did not get rich!
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Format: Hardcover
The Klondike gold rush was hazardous, expensive, and frustrating. This book is a fantastic way to get this information into your child. It is a fiction book for older children, the story of two friends who get swept up in gold fever and head out to the Yukon to get rich.

Here's how the illustrations work in this book - each double page is separated into three horizontal panels. The center panel is the text. The top (larger panel) is an action illustration of the text. The bottom illustration is context and background information, with captions and explanations. I've never seen this style before - I really like it. My boys LOVE it.

Great book. Offers a few books for further reading. Great maps.

Excellent vocabulary words: dismal, fretful, swarming, enthusiasm, ferried, disasters, abandoned, despairing, gallant...

Don't miss this one.

For a very interesting companion book, try "A Small Tall Tale From the Far, Far North" by Peter Sis. A Small Tall Tale From The Far Far North
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Carmack on May 15, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I happened across this book in a local branch of the Taipei, Taiwan Public Library of all places. The pictures are wonderful. The story is sure to capture children's imaginations (I just skimmed it, because my friend was just showing me the children's section of the library). But, given my last name, one thing stood out: that the last name of the generally-attributed discoverer of the Klondike gold rush is misspelled as something like "Cormack" -- i.e., with an O. In NO other source about George Washington CARMACK have I seen his name spelled in any other way than Carmack. And that includes newspapers of the time, official records of the era, official collections at libraries and other locations. I mean, heck, there is even a town in Alaska named Carmacks. So this is one bit of bad research or poor proofreading or flagrant misspelling.

Yeah, this isn't a thorough review, but given my own last name, this mistake stuck out.

An interesting point that the author mentions is that the location in the Yukon where the gold was discovered was at the time in a "grey area" as to whether it was part of Canada or Alaska (USA).
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