By Gary Kelley
92 Pages – Ages 9+
Published in 2010 by Old Line Publishing
All in one horrible day, Jacob Thompson’s parents were killed and scalped and his little sister, Hannah, was kidnapped by the Blackfeet Indians. Jacob was rescued by 2 Mountain Men, Prophet and Four Toes Wallace. The Mountain Men took Jacob in and Jacob started to learn their ways. He learned how to hunt, shoot a buffalo gun, set traps for animals (for their fur), survive a grizzly attack and to trade with the Indians. He got his nickname “Long Shot” from a Shoshoni Indian who admired how accurately he could shoot. Prophet and Four Toes took Jacob to a rendezvous where men and Indians traded goods and tell tales. They heard stories of a little white girl with curly hair seen with Blackfeet Indians. Hannah must be alive and it was up to them to rescue her! It was time for Jacob to show he was a real “Mountain Man” and rescue his sister from the Indians.
I really enjoyed this book. This helped me learn about Oregon when setters were first there. I learned things like when rawhide is wet it is stretchy and when it dries it is really hard to break, how the settlers traded with the Indians, and how the Indians lived. The book was super thrilling, exciting, amazing, and a challenge to put down! There was a little bit of violence (nothing too graphic, but some disturbing subjects like scalping) so it wouldn’t be good for kids younger than 9. I recommend it to people who like historical fiction or adventure books. I liked how Mr. Kelley put in his foreword recommendations on how to read the book and how the characters sounded. It really helped the story become “real” to me. There is also a helpful glossary in the back of the book for words and phrases that the reader may not be familiar with. At 92 pages, the book was a very quick read but the story was told well. The only thing I wasn’t really fond of was the cover art on the book. It was interesting but I think I could have been better.
Mr. Kelley is a retired middle school teacher. You can learn more about him and his other book “Skunk Catcher” at his website by clicking HERE . There is also loads of information about living and surviving during settler’s times in the “end notes for The Youngest Mountain Man” page on his blog.
Categories: Age 9+