Reviews

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Sedgwick's historical mystery, set in the Arctic Circle in 1899 and 1910, makes good use of the word chilling. Outside their remote Scandinavian village, Sig's father dies of exposure after trying to rush home across a frozen lake. The reason for his carelessness becomes apparent to Sig when a hulking beast of a man arrives at their tiny shack with a Colt revolver, demanding his share of a stolen wealth of gold. But Sig has his own Colt hidden in the storeroom, and some very pressing questions. Who is this brute at the door? Is there really a hidden treasure? And, most importantly, can he bring himself to use that revolver to save himself and his family? As the claustrophobic tension in the Arctic cabin mounts, Sedgwick doles out bits of backstory set a decade earlier in the Alaska gold rush, and the climax reveals that there hasn't been a single superfluous detail in the intricate, freezer-burn buildup. A carefully crafted story effectively rigidified by taut plotting and the crystalline atmospherics of its isolated setting.--Chipman, Ian Copyright 2010 Booklist


Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Sig is the teenaged son of Einar Andersson, who has fallen through the ice of a frozen lake and died. Sig sits with his father's body in their small, cold cabin when along comes a knock at the door. Gunther Wolff claims that Einar owed him half of a fortune in gold. Now, with Einar dead, Sig must find the gold or another way to get this menacing stranger out of his cabin and his life-with or without the use of his father's ancient revolver. Why It Is for Us: The suspense mounts in this atmospheric story, which pits faith and forgiveness against the cold will to survive. Placed 100 miles north of the Arctic Circle at the turn of the (last) century, this book will keep readers shivering even through triple-digit temperatures.-Angelina Benedetti, "35 Going on 13," BookSmack! 7/15/2010 (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Set in 1910, 100 miles north of the Arctic Circle in the Scandinavian town of Giron, this intense survival story is propelled by a relentless sense of danger and bone-chilling cold. Einar, teenage Sig's father, has died after a fall through the ice. But the harsh environment pales in comparison with the ruthless stranger, Gunther Wolff, who demands from Sig and his sister the gold their father allegedly stole from him a decade earlier in the Alaska Gold Rush. Sedgwick (My Swordhand Is Singing) reveals the truth in riveting, gemlike scenes that juggle time periods, points of view, and the family's divided worldview, epitomized by Einar's Colt revolver. "Guns are evil. Evil, Einar," says Sig's pacifist mother, while the more pragmatic Einar believes his Colt is "the most beautiful thing in the world." In the end, the gun plays a pivotal role as Sig must shape his own view and act accordingly. Gracefully weaving in sources as diverse as the Old Testament story of Job and an 1896 ad for the revolver, Sedgwick lures his readers into deeper thinking while they savor this thrillingly told tale. Ages 12-up. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


School Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Gr 7 Up-In 1910, in a lonely cabin 100 miles north of the Arctic circle, Sig Andersson sits alone with his father's body while his sister and stepmother go for help. A sled crossing on thin ice had proved foolhardy for Einar, an otherwise prudent man, and his son found him half-submerged in icy water, frozen to death. When a menacing stranger bangs on the door, claiming to be Einar Andersson's ex-business partner, Sig wrestles with the possibility that his father had cheated prospectors out of gold in his position as Assay Clerk. As Sig is held captive by the pistol-toting Gunther Wolff, the story flashes back, in short glimpses, to events leading up to this day. Sig relives the mystery surrounding the death of his beloved mother when he was very young and his father's lessons about God and respecting the power of a gun. The tension escalates as the teen calculates his chances of retrieving his father's hidden revolver or escaping from the bearlike intruder, all the while worrying about the return of his unsuspecting sister. The bleak setting and ominous circumstances will draw immediate comparisons to a Jack London tale, but in a more accessible, spare style. Reluctant readers will be riveted by the suspense and the short chapters. Scenes dealing with brutality or the harsh realities of death may not be for sensitive readers but the satisfying ending will dispel some of the gloomy tone. A great addition to survival/adventure collections.-Vicki Reutter, Cazenovia High School, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Sedgwick's historical mystery, set in the Arctic Circle in 1899 and 1910, makes good use of the word chilling. Outside their remote Scandinavian village, Sig's father dies of exposure after trying to rush home across a frozen lake. The reason for his carelessness becomes apparent to Sig when a hulking beast of a man arrives at their tiny shack with a Colt revolver, demanding his share of a stolen wealth of gold. But Sig has his own Colt hidden in the storeroom, and some very pressing questions. Who is this brute at the door? Is there really a hidden treasure? And, most importantly, can he bring himself to use that revolver to save himself and his family? As the claustrophobic tension in the Arctic cabin mounts, Sedgwick doles out bits of backstory set a decade earlier in the Alaska gold rush, and the climax reveals that there hasn't been a single superfluous detail in the intricate, freezer-burn buildup. A carefully crafted story effectively rigidified by taut plotting and the crystalline atmospherics of its isolated setting.--Chipman, Ian Copyright 2010 Booklist


Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Sig is the teenaged son of Einar Andersson, who has fallen through the ice of a frozen lake and died. Sig sits with his father's body in their small, cold cabin when along comes a knock at the door. Gunther Wolff claims that Einar owed him half of a fortune in gold. Now, with Einar dead, Sig must find the gold or another way to get this menacing stranger out of his cabin and his life-with or without the use of his father's ancient revolver. Why It Is for Us: The suspense mounts in this atmospheric story, which pits faith and forgiveness against the cold will to survive. Placed 100 miles north of the Arctic Circle at the turn of the (last) century, this book will keep readers shivering even through triple-digit temperatures.-Angelina Benedetti, "35 Going on 13," BookSmack! 7/15/2010 (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Set in 1910, 100 miles north of the Arctic Circle in the Scandinavian town of Giron, this intense survival story is propelled by a relentless sense of danger and bone-chilling cold. Einar, teenage Sig's father, has died after a fall through the ice. But the harsh environment pales in comparison with the ruthless stranger, Gunther Wolff, who demands from Sig and his sister the gold their father allegedly stole from him a decade earlier in the Alaska Gold Rush. Sedgwick (My Swordhand Is Singing) reveals the truth in riveting, gemlike scenes that juggle time periods, points of view, and the family's divided worldview, epitomized by Einar's Colt revolver. "Guns are evil. Evil, Einar," says Sig's pacifist mother, while the more pragmatic Einar believes his Colt is "the most beautiful thing in the world." In the end, the gun plays a pivotal role as Sig must shape his own view and act accordingly. Gracefully weaving in sources as diverse as the Old Testament story of Job and an 1896 ad for the revolver, Sedgwick lures his readers into deeper thinking while they savor this thrillingly told tale. Ages 12-up. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


School Library Journal
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Gr 7 Up-In 1910, in a lonely cabin 100 miles north of the Arctic circle, Sig Andersson sits alone with his father's body while his sister and stepmother go for help. A sled crossing on thin ice had proved foolhardy for Einar, an otherwise prudent man, and his son found him half-submerged in icy water, frozen to death. When a menacing stranger bangs on the door, claiming to be Einar Andersson's ex-business partner, Sig wrestles with the possibility that his father had cheated prospectors out of gold in his position as Assay Clerk. As Sig is held captive by the pistol-toting Gunther Wolff, the story flashes back, in short glimpses, to events leading up to this day. Sig relives the mystery surrounding the death of his beloved mother when he was very young and his father's lessons about God and respecting the power of a gun. The tension escalates as the teen calculates his chances of retrieving his father's hidden revolver or escaping from the bearlike intruder, all the while worrying about the return of his unsuspecting sister. The bleak setting and ominous circumstances will draw immediate comparisons to a Jack London tale, but in a more accessible, spare style. Reluctant readers will be riveted by the suspense and the short chapters. Scenes dealing with brutality or the harsh realities of death may not be for sensitive readers but the satisfying ending will dispel some of the gloomy tone. A great addition to survival/adventure collections.-Vicki Reutter, Cazenovia High School, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.