Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Recommended! Darryl Baker's KAMIK JOINS THE PACK

Kamik Joins the Pack was in my mail today. Adapted from the memories of Darryl Baker, who is Inuit, the story is the third in Inhabit Media's series featuring Jake and his pup, Kamik.

I first met Kamik in 2013, in Kamik: An Inuit Puppy Story. Jake had just gotten him. Course, Kamik has all the bountiful energy of a puppy---and Jake has all the frustration of a little boy trying to teach him this or that. Jake's grandpa helps him out, giving him perspective, and stories, too, about the importance of sled dogs. Then in 2015, Kamik's First Sled came out. In it, Jake wants Kamik to learn how to pull a sled. His grandma helps him.

This year, in Kamik Joins the Pack, Jake is visiting his uncle. That uncle has a great dog sled team and has won many races. Jake hopes that, someday, Kamik can be on a team like that. He's still a pup, and still learning.

Jake's uncle is getting ready to take his team out. He shows Kamik some of the things he does to make sure his dogs are in good shape. And he tells Jake about things dogs will do--like chewing on the harnesses and ropes. Knowing how to sew and braid so that he can repair chewed up ropes and harnesses, is important, too! There's other responsibilities, too. It seems like a lot of work to Jake, but his uncle is reassuring. Like Kamik, he'll learn, a bit at a time. As the story ends, Kamik is off, on a short run, with the pack.

As with the other Kamik books, I love the present-day setting, and the significant role extended family members play in Jake's life. In each one, Qin Leng's illustrations are vivid and lively. Endearing and accurate, the Kamik stories are terrific. If you don't have the first two, get them right away when you get Kamik Joins the Pack. As I'm writing, snow is falling outside. It is falling in a good many places in the US... it is wintertime! Perfect time for sharing stories.... about puppies and sleds.

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