Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Here's one for all you survival fans who enjoy the "roughing it" stories of author's like Gary Paulsen and Will Hobbs.  ALABAMA MOON has a living off the land plot combined with a whole lot more.

Ten year old Moon Blake has lived in the forest with his father since he was just a baby.  He has grown up hearing Pap explain the reason they live their isolated existence is because they can live without the interference of the government.  Not knowing exactly what that means doesn't really bother Moon.  All he knows is his life is full of activity and adventure.  They hunt and fish and raise vegetables that they sell on their rare trips to a nearby country store.  Moon can read and write, and he's learned tons about animals and the outdoors from an impressive library Pap has stored away in their underground home.

Everything begins to change when a rich lawyer buys up the land Moon and Pap live on.  Surveyors show up and soon a huge lodge is under construction too close for comfort.  Pap's plan has always been to move to Alaska where he says there are lots of government haters, but an unfortunate fall leaves Pap with a badly broken leg.  Even though Moon tries his best to care for Pap's injury, the leg becomes infected and there is nothing Moon can do.  He buries his father next to the grave they dug for his mother years ago.

Moon's life changes even further when he is picked up by the local constable.  He is delivered to a boys' home where he gets his first taste of the real world.  Being cooped up in buildings and tied down by rules makes Moon restless and homesick.  It isn't long before he has a plan to escape.  He and two other boys successfully make their way into the forest where Moon's survival skills are put to the test.  Can he return to the life he loves or will he find that companionship and some of the comforts of society are too important to ignore?

Author Watt Key takes readers on an incredible journey with Moon and his friends.  The wild boy will have readers rooting for him as he battles the law, his memories, and nature.  ALABAMA MOON is a great book for guys, especially reluctant readers.

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