I kind of discovered that book a couple of years back at my library and since I couldn´t find any other that caught my interest that day I took it home and started reading. Christopher Ross was absolutely new to me at that time and this series sounded promising. Today I have read all of his books from this series, there are four so far, and it is always some kind of pleasure. Sadly, his books or most of them – his Alaska Wilderness series included – are only available in the German language. But I hope that´ll change and till then I will publish my thoughts about them in English so that you can get at least a glimpse of their beauty.

Verschollen Am Mount McKinley*
by Christopher Ross
Alaska Wilderness Series #1
Publisher Ueberreuter on September 9, 2013
Genre Children 12+
Pages 224
Format Hardcover
Source Library

Julie is her big dream, becoming Ranger, very close: She starts an apprenticeship at Denali National Park in Alaska. Even her beloved Huskies she´s allowed to bring with and to go on patrol with the Husky sled. As Julie with her colleague is about to lead a touring company to Mount McKinley, she wants to prove that she is good for ranger, and that not even the handsome Josh can destract her. Can Julie master her task, though her protéges get themselves into danger?
Julie has a big dream: she wants to become a ranger at the Denali National Park in Alaska. A dream she does everything for. Together with her beloved Huskies she starts an internship at the park and discovers the beautiful landscape on the sled during she´s on patrol. Not even the handsome Josh is able to abstract her from making her dream come true. But when she is told to guide a hiking group during their tour at Mount McKinley, she has to prove that she is really able to master her tasks; even when one of her protégés is getting into real danger.

Maybe not everyone will like the writing style of Christopher Ross. He writes very decent, uses a clear and simple language and you won´t find much of action or fights in his novels. But maybe this is exactly what brings the special charm to his stories. Verschollen am Mount McKinley is written in the personal perspective by Julie and takes the reader into the daily life a ranger or in this case, an intern has to manage. The care of her Huskies is as much important as the protection of the wildlife at the park. From his writing to get to know that the author knows what he is writing about, that he is somehow familiar with the landscape, the life in Alaska, and that he knows the American mentality. But I have to be honest, if it wasn´t for the great landscapes he´s describing in this book, I wouldn´t have lasted long reading it. It takes the author quite some time before he starts to bring some action into the plot before he gives you a really interesting glimpse into the daily work of the rangers in this story. But from there on you are hooked and can´t put it down anymore and it feels more like reading a thriller than a children´s book.

The author doesn´t provide a lot of description when it comes to his different characters. You get only what he thinks is absolutely necessary and the rest is up to you. I like that kind of space, to watch a character during a story, to see how and if they develop and with Julie you get a real good look inside a person who is bound to her dream, devoted to her Huskies and not in for a new love.

Christopher Ross created with Julie a young woman in her early twenties. Her parents are divorced and she is not what you would call a friendly or very extrovert woman. But she is fascinating in her own ways. She sees everything from a different perspective thinks differently and acts very thoughtful. For a woman, that age usually not normal but it suits her. And during the story evolves you get to know why that is and it makes her even more likable. Becoming an intern at the Denali National Park in Alaska is for Julie everything. One step closer to become a real Ranger at the park. And if that means that she has to concentrate completely on her work and leave her private life at zero for a while, then so be it.

A very sensitive novel, with some problems at the beginning, yes, but after that, it becomes a kind of almost thriller with a fantastic story and great entertainment.

Happy reading

*This title was at the time of review only available in the German language.

Christopher Ross

Christopher Ross is the pseudonym of Thomas Jeier, born in Minden, Westfalen in 1947. He grew up in Frankfurt/Main, Germany. After his apprenticeship as bookseller, he became editor in chief of a youth magazine. He lives nearby Munich and “on the road” in the USA. For his books and documentary films he has been decorated several times.


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