Friday, May 1, 2015

Spring Reading 2015 Travels with Gannon & Wyatt: Greenland


For those who have seen  movies like "8 Below," "Snow Dogs," and "Balto," here is another story in which humans are dependent on their sled dogs to survive in a frozen wilderness. Wyatt and Gannon have traveled to Greenland to meet up with the guide who will take them on a trip into the Arctic Circle. They plan to gather data like temperatures on the Greenlandic ice sheet to report back to the Youth Exploration Society. Their guide, Unaaq, has taken their parents on a polar expedition before, and his nephew Nuka is very experienced and is also helping with the trip. But they get word that a group of villagers have been stranded on the ice because all of their dogs came down with a mysterious illness and can't pull the sleds. The boys decide to go with Unaaq and Nuka to try and rescue the villagers and keep them from starving out on the ice.

As with all of the books in this series, information about the geography, culture, and language of the area are worked into the journal entries the boys write during their trip. Details about what kinds of food are eaten, the clothing, and traditions fit easily into the story, but there are also plenty of scientific observations about climate change, pollution, and wildlife. Compared to some of the other books, this one seemed to put the boys into more danger just because of the unforgiving environment - imagine traveling through a land where an average January temperature is -40! I like the way the authors show the boys take the trip seriously by preparing beforehand. They research, practice working with sled dogs, and make sure to get qualified guides and the right sort of clothing and equipment.

Fans of the series will enjoy this installment, and newcomers will be pulled in to the exciting world travels of the twins very easily. Recommended for readers who enjoy travel and adventure stories, books that include conservation themes, and survival stories.

I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley. Visit the series website for more information about the boys and the books.

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