The Skeleton Tree is a modern-day adventure story written by award winning YA author Iain Lawrence.
This is a survival tale tracking two teenage boys, Chris and Frank, who dislike each other intensely. After a sailing trip with Chris’ uncle goes awry and their boat sinks, they quickly have to learn how to survive in the wilderness off the coast of Alaska.
This fast moving adventure story tells of endurance and friendship! The boys have no radio, no flares, no food. Suddenly, they’ve got to forage, fish, and scavenge the shore for supplies. Chris likes the company of a curious, friendly raven more than he likes the prickly Frank. But the boys have to get along if they want to survive.
Check out The Skeleton Tree Audiobook read by Mr. Nick:
As the days up North get colder, and the salmon migration ends, survival for the boys will take more than sheer force of will. Eventually, in the wilderness of Alaska, Chris and Frank discover an improbable bond – and the compassion that might truly be the path to rescue.
The Skeleton Tree was the finalist for the 2017 TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. Here is an excerpt from the jury: “Lawrence is well known for his tales of high seas adventure: here he offers a compelling yarn of sea and shipwreck close to his home in the Pacific Northwest… Lawrence weaves a touching tale of struggle and conflict, hope and determination, of family and identity, in a page-turning, breathtaking style… His firsthand knowledge of his setting brings lush, exhilarating vibrancy to this excellent survival story.”
Adventurous inspiration by the YA author Iain Lawrence.
Mr. Lawrence spent a lot of time on the north coast of British Columbia, the part that’s now the Great Bear Rainforest. He would spend two or three months a year in very remote places in this region, which would become the setting for his book.
The story appeals to me because it’s just like the stories my father read to me when I was a child. Stories like Treasure Island, tales that had a sense of adventure and danger in them. – Iain Lawrence
The original idea for the story was simply about survival on the water — a boy, a lifeboat and how he tries to survive. The story changed, over several revisions, to become The Skeleton Tree.
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Go ahead and taken a listen to The Skeleton Tree!
I’m sure you will get pulled into the story and might even learn a thing or two about surviving in the wilderness. Be sure to come back and leave us a comment after you’ve finished the story.