Monday, 25 June 2012

Book Review: The Inuk Mountie Adventure by Eric Wilson

Book:  The Inuk Mountie Adventure (A Tom Austen Mystery) by Eric Wilson, Harper Colins, 1996.

What is the sinister conspiracy code-named CanSell, and how does it threaten Canada?  Is the nation's handsome Prime Minister really what he seems?  The truth is on a micro-cassette that Tom Austen must somehow find before a crucial vote by Canadians on the future of the country.  

While on a school trip to Gjoa Haven in the high Arctic, Tom unexpectedly learns the cassette might be closer than he thought.  Between drum dances and snowmobile chases across the tundra, Tom searches for the cassette and learns a valuable lesson from the Inuit about the futility of violence.

My Thoughts:
I saw Eric Wilson speak at the Word on the Lake conference in Salmon Arm, BC, and what a pleasure it was!  I loved hearing about his writing experiences and how he came to write Canadian mysteries for reluctant readers.  Wilson has a knack for combining action and adventure with Canadian history, geography, and politics in order to create fast paced and exciting books that kids will want to read.  I know that combination may sound preachy and unappealing, but it's not.

In The Inuk Mountie Adventure, Tom Austin gets caught up in looking for a micro cassette that will lead him to a killer and save Canada from the underhanded plans of a corrupt Prime Minister. 

Wilson paints a vivid picture of life in the far north and the culture of the people, as well as creates tension and mystery about who the killer is.  I like how Tom is clever and curious and is able to think on his feet.  I like that Tom makes mistakes, but is still able to move on.

There is a richness and a straightforwardness to this book that I think kids will love and will have them turning the pages to find out what will happen next.  I can see both boys and girls liking this book, as well as reluctant and non reluctant readers. 

Monday, 4 June 2012

Your Brain on NaNoWriMo

I've never done this before, but instead of my own blog post, I am going to put in a link to The Office of Letters and Light, better known as National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo - the goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November). 

They posted a great article about why you can be more creative if you turn of that nasty "internal editor" for awhile.  This article is an interview with a brain researcher named Charles Lamb.

I have now done 3 Nanowrimo's and am always amazed at the solutions I come up with because I have challenged myself to write and some of it even flows pretty well.  I give up caring about how good my writing is, and just do it. 

Here is the link to the OLL blog:  Your Brain on NaNoWriMo

Here is a TED video of Charles Limb talking about his research:  Your Brain on Improv