53. Footsteps in the Snow

Footsteps in the Snow: The Red River Diary of Isobel Scott by Carol Matas
A book in the Dear Canada series

Pages: 185
Finished: Mar. 13, 2008
First Published: 2002
Genre: children, historical fiction
Rating: 3/5

First Sentence:

Mother is dead.

Reason for Reading: I've wanted to read this series for a while. I chose this one to start with because I have read other of Carol Matas' historical fiction and enjoy her work.

Comments: Written in diary format this is the story of a young Scottish girl who journeys with her father and brothers to the Red River Settlement in Rupert's Land, located in what is now called Manitoba. This was an ill-fated and trouble-filled settlement. The settlers faced hardships every step of the way. Isobel has a very interesting voice and I enjoyed this book. Isobel describes the settlers disappointments, their hardships through the winters, their friendship with the Indians and the attack of the Metis at the Seven Oaks Massacre. We also see the personal side of the settlers as they celebrate their holidays, get married and persevere through all hardships. At the end of the diary, there is a final chapter that tells what happened to each character in the book, then a historical note chapter with the actual history of the settlement and finally several pages of illustrations of the historical characters and area. An enjoyable, well-written book.


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