Wild Life by Cynthia DeFeliceAdolescent Survival
A hunting book! Be still, my teaching heart! This is literally only the second hunting book I've ever found written for young people. How rare! And, how very delightful that is was also well-written!
This is my favorite type of genre (adventure/survival) and even if you don't like hunting, there's still plenty enough for you to sink your teeth into. When both of Erik's parents are deployed to Iraq, he has little choice but to go and stay with his maternal grandparents, people he barely knows. Naturally, this means he's going to miss his friends and school but missing his first grown-up hunting trip is almost more than he can bear. Combine that with the pain of his parent's leaving and Erik is in true turmoil. To make the situation worse, his grandparents are strange and don't know quite what to make of a young boy. His grandfather, Big Darrell, almost seems to hate him. When Erik finds and rescues a hunting dog from a porcupine attack, he's sure that he's found a friend at last, until Big Darrell says, "No dogs!". Erik decides this is the last straw and heads out on his own.
This book hasn't stayed on my shelf since I put it out at school--that's the true sign of a good read!