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Hatchet - Gary Paulsen

Brian is a 13 year old boy with divorced parents. One summer he decides to visit his father in northern Canada. Before he leaves, his mother gives him a hatchet as a parting gift. Brian boards a bush plane and takes off to go see his father. During the middle of the flight, the pilot suffers a medical emergency and passes away. Brian tries to take control of the plane and land it but it ends up crashing into a lake in the middle of a forest. He survives the crash and holds out hope that he will be rescued soon, but after awhile he realizes he is going to have to learn how to survive on his own. For most of the summer, all he has is his hatchet and the clothes on his back. He learns how to start a fire and find food and deal with different threats. Then one day there is a tornado that shifts the plane from the bottom of the lake more towards the bank of the lake. He decides to swim under the water to get into the plane for supplies. Once he is inside, he finds a survival pack that contains an emergency transmitter. He tries to activate it but does not know how to use it so he throws it away because he thinks the water ruined it. However it is working and his distress call is heard by a passing plane that comes to rescue him. I would use this book to test students for comprehension considering it is full an incredible story. Also would be a great book for advanced readers.


Lexile Measure: 1020L