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on 27 May 2002
When you first open this book and read through till the end, you will find yourself so absorbed in "Hatchet" that you shall not want to put this book down.
I felt sorry for the main character in the book called Brian Robeson whose parents have split up because his mother was having an affair with a different man. During this book it was called "The Secret".
Brain is on his way to spend time with his father. Before he left his mother gave him a present of a Hatchet. While travelling on the plane the pilot has a heart-attack and the plane crashes into the Canadain forests. Gary Paulson explains the stages of the heart attack very well and you will find this part very gripping.
The book from then on deals with Brain's survival, the search for food, the need for a fire and how he learns to cook and catch meat which at home he would never dream of doing.
After reading "Hatchet" you will realise how lucky you are for all of your home comforts.
One thing that I did not like was that sometimes the book was slightly boring. The reason that I thought it was boring is that Gary Paulson goes on a lot about him catching food and the struggle to do so. After hearing about the berries and then the fish, I was fed up by the birds.

I do not think that I would survive if I was placed where Brain was as I survive too much on home comforts.
Overall I thought this book was very good and I can't wait to read one of the follow ups, "Hatchet:The return", or "Hatchet:Winter".
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on 19 March 2017
Brian Robeson was 13yrs and a passenger in a Cessna 406, he had left New York and was off to see his father who worked in the oil fields in Canada, his parents were separated, Brian sat in the co pilots seat, the pilot appeared ill, as he left his mother she gave him a hatchet as a present, the pilot has a heart attack and dies, Brian was alone and did not know how to fly, the radio didn't work, fuel was running out and he had to land, he saw a lake, the plane crashed into trees and sank in the lake, Brian tears off his seatbelt and swims to shore, he is exhausted, this gives him time to think of his mother, Brian had seen her with another man, when he recovers he finds no breaks but his head is swollen, then mosquitos cover him, he sleeps, Brian has no idea where he is, he drinks from the lake and is then faced with hunger

All Brian has is his hatchet, and a broken watch, first he must make shelter and look for food, as the sun went down he was once more covered in mosquitos, he had found berries and eaten a great ammount, he was now in agony with his stomach and had terrible diarrhoea, he awoke in the morning and cried, Brian had to face all this and much more alone, there will be bears and a bad experience with a porcupine, Brian would have to work out how to make fire, he would have to find food, learn how to fish, how to make weapons, he has a losing battle with a skunk, Brian has to survive a tornado and an animal attack that nearly kills him, can Brian survive long enough to be rescued

My verdict, quite enjoyed this book, well worth a read
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on 5 January 2014
Despite the title making it sound like an 18+ horror, this is in fact a beautifully written adventure story about 13 year old Brian Robeson. He is flying north across the Canadian wilderness to visit his father, when the pilot has a heart attack and dies - throwing the small 2-seater plane way off course in the process. Brian survives the crash and has to learn how to survive on his own, with only the hatchet that his mother gifted to him for help.

Author Gary Paulsen's own adventurous life more than qualifies him to pen such a gripping story. As a teacher, in Europe, I take advantage of the fact that his books are still relatively unknown outside of North America, and study it with my students - it's refreshing to find a book where half the class don't announce, 'I've read this' - and they always love it!

EXCITING TIP: If you loved this book then head straight for 'Brian's Winter' - it'd be a slight spoiler if I told you what it's about...but it's a VERY clever little 'what if...' sequel idea from Paulsen!
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on 8 May 1998
Brian is a 12 year old school boy who flies to Canada to visit his father,but then all goes wrong.The pilot flying Brian starts to have a heart attack.The plane crashes in the Canadian Outback and Brian is left to survive on his own,with nothing but a hatchet. Brian encounters many problems that he has to tackle himself,during his stay with the wildlife.
During Brians stay in the wilderness ,he, in the beginning often thinks about his separated parents and The Secret. Brian entered the wilderness being a spoilt brat , with a negative mind and left the wilderness with a positive and a more mature attitude towards life.
Brian keeps on thinking that people will come and rescue him,but he is wrong.Brian is only rescued after four months.He has to make a fire to keep him warm at night,but he has no supplies to help him.Brian slowly learns to many survival skills,such as how to make a fire and how to hunt and fish for food for himself. After a little while a storm blows up and lifts the plane out of the water.He soon gets to the plane and manages to get a small bag with survival gear.
The main characters of this novel are Brian, his parents and the pilot.
Read the book to find out the rest!
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on 27 May 2002
I enjoyed reading this book, it kept me busy. it keeps you on the edge of your seat.
The pilot of Brian's plane dies while in flight and young Brian has to land the plane. He also has to learn how to catch food, how to make fire and most importantly how to SURVIVE. The only tool he has to help him is his hatchet, given to him by his mother, which is tied tightly around his belt. It is a classic story of survival against all odds.
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on 20 November 2010
Amazing book. I was so scared that my heart was beating loudly in my chest! I loved it, and can't wait to get the next one. I am 11 and I it was the best book I have ever read!
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on 12 October 1999
Hatchet is a great book of survival. It's about a boy whose parents have spilt up and he has gone to visit his father in an aeroplane. The aeroplane driver has a heart attack so the boy takes control of the plane and lands it near a lake. He is now stuck in the middle of no wear with no food or now drink. All he has to live on is berries and the lake water. The only tool he has is his hatchet (a small axe ) he uses it to make a fire but he doesn't want to let the fire go out so he has to keep on going out of his camp to fetch fire wood. Soon he is going to run out of it so read the book, find out how he survives that's if he survives. To find what happens try buying the great adventure story of Hatchet
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on 27 May 2002
"Hatchet", written by Gary Paulson, is about a boy called Brian who is travelling in a bushplane(a small two seated plane) to live with his father for the summer when the plane crashes. The reason Brian is going to his fathers is because his parents are divorced and Gary Paulson refers to this throughout the book. The pilot has a heart attack and Brian is left to crash land the plane in a lake and realises he is alone in the Canadian wilderness with only a hatchet(a small axe). As the plot progresses Brian begins to learn more about how to survive with only a hatchet given to him by his mother.
I would recomend hatchet to everyone as it is very intense and very enjoyable. If you have already read "Hatchet" there is also the option of Hatchet: Winter or Hatchet: the return, which both offer alternative endings to hatchet.
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on 31 August 2000
This book is brilliant. It keeps you on the edge of your seat and has excellent detail. It is a must read. It shows survival skills, evolution and pure brilliance!
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on 27 May 2002
The best book I have read this year. Hatchet is emotional, exciting and, best of all, realistic.
I found Brian's survival skills very educational e.g making the shelter, lighting the fire, getting food and water but most of all, never giving up.
While reading this book I did not want to put it down. It really keeps you on the edge of your seat and I can't wait to read "Hatchet the Return".
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