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The Great Death
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The visitors from downriver had strange pale skin and blue eyes, but they left a deadly sickness of red spots and fever. Thirteen-year-old Millie and her younger sister Maura were the only survivors. As the first snowflakes fell, the dogs were turning wild, and it was clear that the two girls would have to leave and find a new home. They loaded up a raft to take them away, and so began an epic journey through the harsh snowy landscape… Set in Alaska and based on the real experiences of the author’s grandmother, this is an extraordinary story of courage, endurance and survival.
“A celebration of the human spirit.” The Daily Mail
“John Smelcer’s The Great Death is an outstanding piece of writing and undoubtedly my favourite novel of the year.” The Bookseller
“This is quite an exceptional survival story. It is realistic and vividly detailed, but it also has the quality of myth.” The School Librarian
“Told in lyrical and elegant prose without a word wasted and the overwhelming beauty of the harsh but beautiful Alaskan landscape rises vividly from the page.” Bookbag.co.uk
October 8th, 2009
AR book level: 6.1; Middle years; 5.0 points
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