ALA Best Fiction for Young Adults
Golden Sower Award (Nebraska)
Golden Archer Award (Wisconsin)
Book Sense Pick
Nevada Young Readers' Award
Beehive Award (Utah)
Maud Hart Lovelace Book Award (Minnesota)
California Young Reader Medal
Flicker Tale Children's Book Award (North Dakota)
About the Book
After severely injuring Peter Driscal in an empty parking lot, mischief-maker Cole Matthews is in major trouble. But instead of jail time, Cole is given an alternative: a one-year banishment to a remote Alaskan island.
This program—called Circle Justice—is based on Native American traditions that provide healing for the criminal mind. To avoid serious jail time, Cole resolves to go.
While there, Cole is mauled by a mysterious white bear and left for dead. Thoughts of his abusive parents, helpless Peter, and his intense anger cause him to examine the root of his troubled ways and seek redemption—from the spirit bear that attacked him, from his victims, and from himself.
Author Ben Mikaelson delivers a poignant depiction of the vicious cycle of violence and one boy’s journey to healing.
This novel supports the Common Core State Standards.
Educator and Librarian Resources
“Mikaelsen’s portrayal of this angry, manipulative, damaged teen is dead on.” —School Library Journal (starred review)
"[Cole's] solitary life on the island is just the ticket for Paulsen fans, who will appreciate the survival story." —The Bulletin
“Mikaelsen paints a realistic portrait of an unlikable young punk.” —Kirkus Reviews
“An excellent companion to Gary Paulsen’s Hatchet and Allan Eckert’s Incident at Hawk’s Hill.” —ALA Booklist
“[Cole’s story] will fascinate young and old, and have everyone waiting for the sequel.” —Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)
- ISBN: 9780380977444
- ISBN 10: 0380977443
- Imprint: HarperCollins
- On Sale: 01/09/2001
- Pages: 256
- List Price: 21.00 CAD
- Ages: 8 to 12
- BISAC1: JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Bears
- BISAC2: JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Emotions & Feelings
- BISAC3: JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Violence