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My Side of the Mountain Paperback – September 1, 1991

747 customer reviews

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Paperback, September 1, 1991
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Editorial Reviews Review

Every kid thinks about running away at one point or another; few get farther than the end of the block. Young Sam Gribley gets to the end of the block and keeps going--all the way to the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York. There he sets up house in a huge hollowed-out tree, with a falcon and a weasel for companions and his wits as his tool for survival. In a spellbinding, touching, funny account, Sam learns to live off the land, and grows up a little in the process. Blizzards, hunters, loneliness, and fear all battle to drive Sam back to city life. But his desire for freedom, independence, and adventure is stronger. No reader will be immune to the compulsion to go right out and start whittling fishhooks and befriending raccoons.

Jean Craighead George, author of more than 80 children's books, including the Newbery Medal-winning Julie of the Wolves, created another prizewinner with My Side of the Mountain--a Newbery Honor Book, an ALA Notable Book, and a Hans Christian Andersen Award Honor Book. Astonishingly, she wrote its sequel, On the Far Side of the Mountain, 30 years later, and a decade after that penned the final book in the trilogy, Frightful's Mountain, told from the falcon's point of view. George has no doubt shaped generations of young readers with her outdoor adventures of the mind and spirit. (Ages 9 to 12) --Emilie Coulter


An extraordinary book... it will be read year after year. -- The Horn Book --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; 1 edition (February 2, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140348107
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140348101
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (747 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #233,854 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

239 of 246 people found the following review helpful By Kerry Sullivan on March 1, 2002
Format: Paperback
OK, I'm 42, and here's my book report.
I read this book the first time back in about 1968. I can still remember dreaming about holing up in a tree house on a mountain somewhere while a great blizzard decends, the wind howling through the tree limbs. And surviving off the wilderness, trapping deer and fishing, hiding out from grownups. It was a tremendous adventure that has stayed with me through the years.
I recently bought this book for my 8-year old boy, but he's still pouring through the Harry Potter series (again), so I re-read it. It's still tremendous after all these years--the adventure every boy dreams of. It's a story of total independence and making it on your own, and the hero is as brave and resourcefull as I dreamed I would be if it were me on that mountain. The book is as entertaining today as it was back then. I know my boy will love it. It's magic without witchcraft.
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180 of 196 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 25, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am 10 years old and have just read this book for my monthlybook report. I am a big fan of this book, My Side Of The Mountain. Theauthor of this book is Jean Craighead George. The main characters ofthe book are Sam Gribley, Frightful , and The Baron Weasel. Sam Gribley is a boy 15 years old who ran away from home to live on the Catskill Mountains. He ran away from home because there were11 poeple in his family, 4 brothers, 4 sisters and 2 adults plus Sam. Frightful is Sam's falcon, he took her from her nest when she was a baby and raised her. He also had a friend named The Baron Weasel who he caught in his trap.
My favorite chapter in the book is when Sam found Frightful a falcon so that he wouldn't get lonely. My second favorite chapter is When The City Comes To Me. And it is when his family comes to visit Sam. His Mom wants him to live in the barn until he is 16 but he doesn't want to.
The chapter that I liked the least was I Cooperate With The Ending. I found this chapter to be sad because I was really interested in the book and I didn't want it to end.
When my Aunt was in grade school she recommended this book to my Dad who was also in grade school. My Dad recommened this book to me and gave it to me for Christmas. When my brother is old enough I will recommended this book to him. The reason why I would recommended it to my brother or anyone is because it is a good book, full of adventure and excitement and I really enjoyed it. This book made me feel like I was in the story as one of the characters.
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57 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Zinta Aistars on February 25, 2004
Format: Paperback
Dare I admit how many years ago I was but a girl, nose buried in this book? Decades, oh, decades ago. Yet even now it stands out as one of the beacon lights of my childhood, leading me to an adulthood that focuses around a love of wilderness.
When young Sam ran away from home (and this is something I routinely did as a girl, tying red bandana to a stick containing crackers, kitchen knife, and toothbrush, and rather long to do again, now as I spend too many of my days in an office) and headed into the Catskill Mountains, my heart went with him. No dream house could match the home he created inside the hollow of a big tree. No gourmet dinner could match the wilderness fare Sam put together, smacking his lips. No pet could match that fine falcon.
Jean Craighead George was then, and is now, at the top of the list of my favorite authors in children's and young adult literature. My own children are grown now, but as they grew, I read George's books to them, giving them not only a taste of fine writing, but also an education in science and wilderness survival, along with a healthy respect for environmental issues. George may write fiction, but her stories are all based on sound scientific data. How Sam survived on the mountain is based on good science. That he uses determination, intelligence, and discipline in living this way is good character. And that's something our kids don't see or read about nearly often enough today.
Highly recommended.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 17, 2002
Format: Paperback
This book, My Side of the Mountain, by Jean Craighead George is a great book. The main character, Sam Gribley, runs away from his New York City apartment one day to seek a new and independent life. Sam chooses to live in the Catskill Mountain because his Grandfather once owned a farm there. While Sam is there, he meets many friends. Some of his new friends are people, and some are animals. Sam's best friend and helper is a falcon he calls Frightful. Sam also shows lots of courage and tolerance in this book. Sam was very courageous during the blizzard that hit the mountain. Sam shows tolerance because he eats things he's never eaten before such as rabbit, crayfish, and vension. This is a great book and anyone who likes adventure should read it.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
The book I read was My Side of the Mountain. Jean Craighead George is the author. My Side of the Mountain is about a teenager who is sick of living in the city. He lives in an apartment with his family in New York City but is unhappy there, so he runs away to the Catskill Mountains where his grandfather has some property. He tries to survive against the brutal winter and ice covered trees, hunters during the deer season, and tries not to be seen by hikers and campers. The setting in the book is in the 1960's or 70's and takes place in New York. The main character in the story is named Sam Gribley. Sam is adventurous and does not like to be kept inside. He can make tools out of stuff you can find in the woods. He is also very brave and courageous for going and staying in the woods alone.

This book is realistic fiction. The moral of the story is if you want something, do something about it. I highly recommend this book for others because it is great how the author explains everything. Sam makes different tools out of twigs and grass and the author explains every detail. The book is also very adventurous and exciting. If you want a book where you hate to stop reading, then this is a great book!
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