Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Paulsen, G. (1987). Hatchet. New York: Scholastic, Inc. 

LS5360: Newbery.  Another book borrowed from my daughter’s library.  

Exposition:  The story opens in New York and the narrator (third person omniscient) introduces us to main character Brian, who plans to visit his dad for summer vacation in Canada.  

  Thirteen-year-old Brian must put aside the pain of his parents’ divorce and learn to survive the Canadian woods when his plane crashes.

Rising Action:  Brian learns survival tactics within the woods and when a tornado occurs and raises the tail of the plane up to where it’s reachable.

Climax:  Brian finds a way into the tail of the plane and salvages the  “treasures” he believes he will need to continue his life in the woods of Canada.

Falling Action:  Brian unknowingly turns on the emergency transmitter and is rescued.

Resolution:  Brian returns home, and through the Epilogue, the reader finds out about Brian’s life back in the real world and how he puts the secret about his mom to rest. 

Literary Qualities:  Foreshadowing (pilot teaching Brian how to control the plane) and irony (gift of the hatchet to Brian) are used regularly throughout the story.

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