Monday, February 11, 2013

The Raft

Bodeen, S. A. 2012. THE RAFT. New York: Macmillan. ISBN 9780312650100
[Suggested Grade Level 8 – 12]

When a “big island” visit with her aunt is cut short, Robbie makes a hasty and poorly communicated decision to hop on a cargo plane for home. Robbie lives with her marine biologist parents on Midway Atoll, an island in the Pacific Ocean “midway” between North America and Asia. The routine trip takes a tragic and fatal turn when a series of natural and mechanical disasters befall the small plane and its crew.

While the majority of the novel takes place floating in the vast Pacific, the story of Robbie and THE RAFT’s other passenger, never drags. Quickly paced and action packed, Robbie’s story of survival has broad appeal and will leave readers anxiously sitting on the edge of their seats.   
Compare and contrast THE RAFT with other stories of survival, such as Robinson Crusoe and Swiss Family Robinson. How do modern conveniences such as cell phones, the Internet and increased independence of young adults play into the development of Robbie’s situation.

Other titles by S. A. Bodeen featuring edgy topics and heroic teens:
THE COMPOUND. ISBN 9780312370152
THE GARDENER. ISBN 9780312370169

Classic tales of survival:
Wyss, Johann David. SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON. ISBN 9781841358390
Defoe, Daniel. Robinson Crusoe. ISBN 9781402784064

By Marianne Crandall Follis

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