McKenna Barney, fourteen, realizes her vision is failing. Her younger sister has already lost almost all her vision to a genetic disorder called Stargardt disease. McKenna faces the same fate, but she still has enough vision to compete in one more dogsled race, one that would carry important letters to try to raise awareness for Stargardt. And she cannot let her parents know what is happening or they will stop her. Even in the best of weather, a dogsled race is difficult, and there will be storms to face along the way. McKenna’s dogs know her well and know how to race, and she finds unexpected help from two of her competitors. Maybe she can do this.
Terry Lynn Johnson has quite a franchise with middle-grade survival stories set in Alaska. This is a terrific survival story that will keep young readers totally engaged and turning pages. The writing is terrific, the dialogue is spot-on, and the characters are well-rounded and completely believable. The story is very compelling. The family relationships not only in McKenna’s life but those of her two competitors add a lot of complexity and credence to this great book.
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