Hatchet (Brian’s Saga, #1)

ISBN: 0689840926
ISBN 13: 9780689840920
By: Gary Paulsen

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Genres

Adventure Childrens Classics Currently Reading Favorites Fiction Survival To Read Ya Young Adult

About this book

Since it was first published in 1987, the story of thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson's survival following a plane crash has become a modern classic. Stranded in the desolate wilderness, Brian uses his instincts and his hatchet to stay alive for fifty-four harrowing days. This twentieth-anniversary edition of Hatchet contains a new introduction and sidebar commentary by Gary Paulsen, written especially for this volume. Drew Willis's detailed pen-and-ink illustrations complement the descriptions in the text and add a new dimension to the book. This handsome edition of the Newbery Honor book will be treasured by Hatchet fans as well as by readers encountering Brian's unforgettable story for the first time.

Reader's Thoughts

Steve Vernon

A few years ago my stepson Connor asked for a copy of this book for Christmas. I hunted it up in a bookstore and decided to give it a read before wrapping it up. Then I had to go back to the bookstore and by another copy because there was no way I was going to let this one get off my book shelf.Hatchet is my all-time favorite YA novel. I admire the precision and no-words-wasted approach that Paulsen demonstrates with his prose. He cuts right to the bone and steps the action up fast.The story is a simple one. The young protagonist is lost in the north woods with nothing but a hatchet to survive with. It is a good old-fashioned yarn that will entertain and enlighten both young and old alike. I don't have enough thumbs to give this book all of the thumbs up it truly deserves. Hunt up a copy for any kid on your gift-buying list and make sure you buy a copy for yourself.Yours in storytelling,Steve Vernon

Marshall Jones

Brian is on a journey across the Canadian forest, on a flight to visit his father. As Brian is on his way to the airport his mom had gave him a pocket hatchet for his trip. On the flight the pilot of the two seat plane started to feel a bit strange and having pains and letting off choking body odors. He was having a heart attack. The pilot had past out and Brian has to take over and steer the plane safley to the ground but insted he safley crashed the plane in the Canadian wilderness. He is now alone. He has nobody.From this point it is just a survival game for Brian, hunting for food and chopping trees for shelter and salvaging any materials from the the crashed plane to stay alive. Brian soon then encounters a big black bear but lucky for Brian he does not go near him. After weeks of staying alive in the wildness alone he manages to get rescued my a search party sent my his father.Hes alive.I really enjoyed reading this book it was very excited and interesting.i would highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys ready very realistic books.

Sara

** spoiler alert ** My step-brother Steven, who isn't much of a reader, told me this was his favorite book of all time, and the only one he read more than once. Every time I see him, he asks if I have read it yet. So Steven, this is for you.This book is about a boy who learns perspective the hard way, by surviving on his own in the Canadian wilderness after the pilot of the small plane he was on has a heart attack. While the boy Brian is the only major character in the book, common literary roles are filled in interesting ways. The villains are despair and "The Secret" (his discovery of his mothers affair which was the cause of his parents divorce). The first he overcomes, the second becomes unimportant. The Hatchet I think, may be my favorite character. Its roles as sidekick and mentor are well established as Brian depends on it for his survival. I look forward to the literary discussion I will have with my step-brother, and maybe he will even become interested in reading again. I can always hope... :-)

Evan

Hatchet, by Gary Paulsen was an amazing novel. Brian, a teenager who had no idea of what he was doing had to survive in the forest by himself without anything except for a hatchet and clothes! I did not enjoy that at the end of the book, Brian finally decides to go into the plane! He found, a survival kit with tools, food, and sleeping bags! Why did he not go into the plane in the first place?The theme of the book was very easy to figure out, never give up. Brian did not stop during his whole "journey" in the forest. He just kept on going and thinking positive. He was very close to giving up when he had failed to get food and when he ate the gut berries. In conclusion, Hatchet had few flaws, but was a great novel!

Nathan Simpson

The Story sets off in a single engine plane, Brian Robenson the main character sitting in the cockpit beside a pilot that he does not know the name to. Brian is hurting down ddep inside when the story flashbacks to a memory when he saw his mother with another guy at the mall, there is more to the story but that is all Brian's recollection to the flashback at that moment. A few weeks later his mother demands for a divorce. Soon he is forced to leave on plane to see his father in Cananada. Right before he boards his plane, his mother, gives him a gift. A hatchet which foreshadows the events to come. He does not know it at the time but that hatchet would count on his survival. Then suddenly the pilot has a heart attack and dies. Brian then takes control of the plane with the few short lessons he had before the Pilot died, and his failed emmergency contact, he crashes the plane in a lake. There is a sudden feeling that Brian has when he crashes that will determine if he lives or dies. He feels reborn. He feels alive.

Ms. Foley

I love outdoor survival stories! If you liked this, you should try "Julie of the Wolves" or "Island of the Blue Dolphins."

Henry

My first foray into childhood favorites for one unlikely-to-succeed purpose: converting my brother from books about Harry Potter to books about anything else, in the world. Any suggestions?When I first read Hatchet, at around ten or twelve, I devoured it time and time again. The idea of learning wilderness survival with nothing but a hatchet and my own wits prickled the pores of my baby-smooth chest with visions of man-hair, tufts and tufts of it, more than I knew what to do with, for after finishing a book about a boy-turned-man's hard-earned survival in the rugged wilderness surely I myself would become a man (I confess to having the same thought at least once when re-reading it at twenty-seven). The book itself holds up as a taut, economically told story, no real flourishes to speak of, and yet when my brother read the first chapter, he woke me up to tell me it was weird. I tried to tease him with upcoming action beat - "there's a plane crash in the next chapter," I told him, at which point he went downstairs to play Super Mario Galaxy.

Matt Hewelt

** spoiler alert ** This was a book about a boy named Brian who is going to visit his father in Canada. On the way, he is co-piloting a small plane in which he is learning the ropes of flying. As soon as everything seems content and quiet, the pilot of the plane has a heart attack. Now, Brian lands the plane and has to survive with the only thing he has, a hatchet that his mother gave to him. Brian spends about a month and a half having adventures alone in the wilderness until he is finally rescued. There are a few sequels to this book that I really reccomend you checking out.The genre of this book is and adventure fiction with sparce moments of suspense and action. The language in this book was at a lower reading level, but it didn't take away from the effectiveness of description the author used. Brian was a dynamic character because he changed alot throughout the story and had to adapt to the circumstances presented before him. The theme of this book is don't underestimate yourself, because you never know what you can accomplish without trying. Brian had to try many new things he wasn't used to doing in this book, but he adapted sucessfully. The type of person that would enjoy this book is someone who enjoys fiction books about survival/wilderness. This book would also be good for someone who likes to learn about others experiences and struggles.

Khang ... Tran

In this amazing book hatchet, Brian is on a journey to his dads house. But first he has to go across the Canadian forest by plane. It was in the summer when Brian got a chance to visit his father, little did he know, the pilot had a heart attack during the flight. Brian was in shock when the pilot died right in front of him. Was this the last moment of Brian's life? This book is so good, its a thrill to read.I recommend this book to you young up and coming readers.This is a realistic fiction book.

David

So when I added this, I vaguely recalled the title, and I swear, I have definitely read it, but what I thought it was about was a boy being stuck under the snow following an avalanche (it turns out the book I was thinking of is apty named Avalanche by Arthur Roth) but anyway, that's not what it is about, and I really don't remember this book at all.Hatchet I definitely read in middle school at the instruction of my librarian (we had a sort of once-weekly class in the library to introduce us to the already anachronistic card catalog, and maybe to encourage us to read). It strikes me now as one of those "boy books" and was sort of offered to me as an alternative to Babysitters' Club or Nancy Drew, maybe. It's strange now, because it undervalues literature very much to say that some is suited to boys, and others to girls (which is to say nothing of our society's pathetic need to classify and categorize). Based on my vague and unreliable memory (and the description gleaned from amazon), here are the reasons why you should have your son, nephew, homeless male orphan read Hatchet:1) It is the story about a boy named Brian. Brian is a great boy name (maybe you've considered it for your tot?), and everything he does (probably) exudes the same brand of outdoorsy masculinity that you want your little Timmy, Tommy or Teddy to adopt as an adolescent and adult.2) It takes place outside. What better way to encourage kids to go outside than to have them sit inside and read a book about a boy who is outside?3) There is a hatchet, presumably. Whether little Johnny has that lumberjack vibe, or that investment banker gone Sarsgaard-murder-house vibe, certainly it will be important to introduce them to the concept of the hatchet. A very useful tool that almost no one uses, as far as I know.4) The plot evidently features a plane crash, wherein Brian must be the lone survivor. Very likely to happen. Also, surely all the characters in this book are male, what better way to introduce your young one to a realistic view of the world than to immerse them in world dominated completely by a young boy and some owls, or something. (also see: Lord of the Flies)5. This 20th anniversary edition features a great commentary by the author, Gary Paulson. Even though your little brat probably won't read this (why would he?), it will give his ego the small boost for the illusion of having read a book a little longer than he actually did).6. This is the first installation of a SAGA. For one, "saga" is reminiscent to me of the Nordic mythos, which seems to be the most supporting of the idealized male image. It also means there are multiple volumes following our intrepid Brian. What more could you want? Why invest in Boy Scouts when you could drop a pile of Brian books in your kid's lap and turn him into a man, while saving all that time and money?Get it! So good!

Keely

Gary Paulsen writes in only two emotions: fine and vomit-y. Someone may want to tell him that there are other ways to provoke a response in a reader than going right for the gut, so to speak. This book could have done with some fear and suspense, perhaps some gratification, depression, or joy. I do not mind a tragedy, nor do I balk at watching the man beaten down. I am a fan of Chekhov's. If your idea of suspense is mosquito bites on your nipples, meet your Stephen King.

Shruti S

HATCHET by Gary Paulsen Brain doesn't think his life will ever be the same after his parents get divorced but his life is about to take an even bigger twist as the plain he is on crashes into Canadian wilderness. alone in the wild, stranded on a piece of jutting out land Brain will try his hardest to survive. Throughout the book I admired his constant positive attitude even when he felt like giving up because without it he would have been dead. It was amazing to read about the number of ways Brain used his hatchet or how a hatchet can be used. Brian used the tool to create fire, to make more tools, and use it for hunting. When Brain tried to hunt fish, he would fail and have to try again and tweak or adapt his tool or his approach before he could get a meal. This made me think about how we must have evolved from millions of years ago. The caveman had to apply the same process of making mistakes and learning from them, trying new things to get a meal. We now have our meals prepared and available in ready-to-eat packets in our modern world. the interesting thing about the book was that even though it did not put me at the edge of my seat I could not put the book down. If you liked "Escape under the forever sky" you very lightly will like "Hatchet".

John

When Brian's plane crash lands in the Canadian wilderness, Brian must learn to survive in the forest all by himself with only his clothes and a hatchet given to him by his mum...I wouldn't say this was the best book I've read but I wouldn't say it was one of the worst. This book gives you that feel that 'you're all alone in an unknown place with who knows what kind of dangers there may be'. And yes, it did make me a little scared. But despite the rather, in my opinion, boring ending of the book, it is nonetheless still a good book.

Max Stone

(fwiw this is a book I read my kids aged 6-10)I'd give this book 3.5 stars if I could. Basically the stuff which makes it a classic and is indeed very good is the adventure/survival stuff (he is the sole survivor of a plane crash deep in the woods and has nothing but a hatchet). Both the details of what he is doing to survive, and the psychological changes he goes through in his attempt to survive are believable, interesting, and illuminating.There is a second thread in the book which is him processing his parents' divorce and in particular "the secret" which is that even before the divorce he saw his mother kissing some other guy. I wanted to retch every time this stuff came up. I found it much less believable and also generally an intrusion into the main story. I tried to think of some deep connection between the divorce / "the secret" and his survival which enabled readers to make connections and learn things about one or the other that they otherwise would not have been able to, but I really couldn't. Survival part gets 4.5 stars; his relationship with his parents gets 1.5 stars (my overall is 3.5 because the survival stuff is dominant).

Becky

I.love.this.book.Seriously, I read this maybe in fourth grade? It was definitly in elementary school, because I remember it was at the same time that we we doing "survival skills"* in Girl Scouts. Not that I ever wanted to be trapped by myself in the wilderness, but I spent a lot of my time in my backyard pretending to find flint with my sister, and starting imaginary fires to keep warm. In winter we dug ourselves igloos. I always went camping with my parents, so this book started a lot of Q&A's with them about what to do if I get lost in the woods (Hint, No. 1 is STAY WHERE YOU ARE!). Any ways, its a great read for an elementary kid, and everyone should read it.* This was put in quotation marks because it was a total joke. I had been looking forward to these skills for quite some time, finally girl scouts was going to teach me what I wanted! Instead of knives they handed us popsicle sticks. For the love of God CUB SCOUTS get real knives. This was followed shortly on the heels of an outdoor cooking class where none of us were allowed near the fire. Basically we made banana boats, and then the instructor put the boats in and out of the coals for us. We learned how to build a fire with coals, not tinder. Agh. It was at this point that I decided Girl Scouts was NOT for me.

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