by Ryan Gebhart
Tyson is thirteen, and he is going through something of a social crisis when the book starts. His best friend, Bright, is gravitating towards a new group, and Tyson is struggling in several of his classes. Instead, he spends time with his grandfather, who has promised to take him hunting, and Tyson can’t wait.
Tyson loves bears. A lot. It’s almost all he thinks about and most of what he talks about, which got pretty tiresome. There was basically nothing else to Tyson’s character except his crush on a girl from Texas, who also happens to really like hunting. Tyson barely tells her a single true thing in all of his conversation with her. His desire to go hunting led him down a questionable decision making path. When his parents decided he couldn’t go hunting with his grandfather because his grandfather was sick and needed special care most days, he decided to sneak his grandfather out of the nursing home and out into the wilderness to shoot an elk. Oh, and there’s a loose grizzly bear wandering around the one area they decide to go to that has been eating people. But they had to go to that spot to shoot an elk.
Most of the characters didn’t have a sense of characters. They existed in an abstract way and did stuff, but they each had one personality trait if they were lucky. The writing was straightforward and to the point, which normally doesn’t bother me, but it seemed really blunt here. There was also slang, which just about always bothers me. I don’t want to read about what people ain’t going to do, and nobody calls a grizzly bear a grizz (although I guess I shouldn’t say nobody - clearly Tyson does). The tone of the book is similar to that of the cover.
This is a 1.4. It did amuse me quite a bit, just because of some of the ridiculous things that got written. Other than that, the best thing about it was that it was short and I knew the end was coming. If it was longer, I probably wouldn’t have finished it. This is like eating the leaves of a carrot. It’s something probably best left uneaten, doesn’t taste very good, but once you’ve taken a bite, it’s not so disgusting that it necessitates being spit out. It might be a good book if you think the cover is really great, or if you also really like bears and hunting.