Nancy Keane's Booktalks -- Quick and Simple

Smelcer, John.
New York : Holt, 2006
IL 5-8, RL 6.8
ISBN 0805079394

(2 booktalks)

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Booktalk #1

Johnny Least-Weaselís grandfather, Albert, has been trapping animals his whole life.  But when he doesnít return from checking his traps, Johnny worries that something has happened to him.  It turns out that Albert has been caught in one of his own traps and Johnny finds himself in a race against time to save his grandfather.  (Lori Loranger, Librarian, Grisham M.S., Round Rock ISD, TX)

Booktalk #2

My name is Albert Least-Weasel. I am an 80 year-old Inuit trapper. I am the only person for miles around. I am returning home from my trapping cabin. I have forty miles of trap lines and no one ever insults my pride by coming near them. We Inuits have great respect for our elders. On the way home to my wife and grandson I have been checking my trap line one last time. This is such a beautiful time and place; so quiet, so cold and so still. Winter is coming in hard. The days are short and the nights are a cold nineteen hours long. I can hear wolves in the distance and can feel the temperature plummet.   Thatís my sled over there Ė only 12 feet away. I left my hat on the seat of the yellow snowmobile before I stepped into the waist-deep snow.  The sled carries two quarters of moose meat and my backpack of survival gear. It carries some more warm clothes and my gun, and supplies to tide me over on the trip home. I have been trapping for over 60 years and know what to take with me.  It is so quiet and so beautiful here. The wilderness seems to speak to me.  Itís getting colder. I am thinking about trapping, my family, my life, my survival skills. I am standing just under the branches of a huge tree. The frozen rabbit, my bait, hangs just above my head. I am all alone in this beautiful white wilderness. It is getting colder and I can hear the wolves in the distance. It is getting colder and darker. This is the last trap I will check. It is getting colder and the wolves are getting nearer. This was the first time I ever made a mistake. It is getting colder.  My foot is caught in The Trap.  (New Hampshire Isinglass Teen Read Award committee)

SUBJECTS:     Survival -- Fiction.
                        Conduct of life -- Fiction.
                        Trapping -- Fiction.
                        Old age -- Fiction.
                        Indians of North America -- Alaska -- Fiction.
                        Alaska -- Fiction.

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