It is no small secret that YA literature (and childrens literature, but to a smaller degree) is dominated by female protagonists. Generally, girls read more fiction than boys, hence the influx of female-centered books every year. However, there are many, many young boys and young men who genuinely enjoy reading, and I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to find a good book with a male protagonist.
Enter Gary Paulsen. Anyone in the literary world knows of this brilliant author and and his many books written from a male point-of-view. Mr. Paulsen has one novel that appears on our Top 100 Childrens Books list, and that book would be Hatchet, a Newbery honor book and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults. Hatchet follows young Brian’s survival story in the Canadian wilderness, after his pilot has a heart attack and he has to crash-land the plane. Y’all know how much I loved Island of the Blue Dolphins, so how could I not enjoy Hatchet? Never fear, I loved it. Filled with emotion and the will to survive, Brian figures it out. We follow him every step of the way and it is hard not to engage in his story and adventure. This novel is a a great recommendation for a pre-teen or early-teen boy who enjoys adventure.
by Gary Paulsen
Originally published in 1989