Review From User :
This is one of my all time favorites that I read as a kid and I was curious to see if it would wield the same emotional power that it did over 30 + years ago. It came into my hands again through a curious set of circumstances.
First: my mom and I had been talking about books during a phone conversation. She had mentioned finding her copy of "Three Against the Wilderness", which I hadn't heard of before so I thought she had meant this one while substituting a different title. Nope, completely different book, but then she told the story of how she loaned her copy of "The Incredible Journey" to a "friend" at one of exercise classes who had been lamenting that she wanted to read it. A significant period of time passed and when my mom asked for her book back her "friend" stated that it was "her" copy all along. Needless to say, my mom was PEEVED over this set of circumstances but she didn't push the issue to get her copy back. I feel like we both lost a family heirloom.
Second: I'd been digging around in a secondhand bookstore, Red River Books, one weekend, and in the course of such treasure hunting had done a rather nice job of reorganizing the scattered stock. The owner appreciates when I do this, plus the fact I pulled a nice little clutch full of goodies to buy and take home led to his giving me a nice little discount. As I was heading out of the store I found a copy of this book lying in a box in the foyer of the store. I took it back into the store and told him I wanted to buy this as well. He politely waved me off and said I could take it home with me for no cost. Made my day!!
Third: my mom was recently in town, she'd come out from BC to take a trip with my aunt and uncle out to the east coast, and saw my copy lying in the bathroom. When I brought it up you could see that even though she was happy I had a copy, she was still incredibly PEEVED about the loss of hers.
The story is still wonderful, It is so easy to visualize these three characters as I have had the pleasure of dealing individually with all three breeds and Bumford nails their personalities and traits in compelling fashion.
Epilogue: I had gone to visit a buddy and his family there other week and I took this book for his youngest to read as he was the only one that I had yet to find a good book for. I'd also taken a copy of "Crow Lake" by Mary Lawson for his wife. As soon as my buddy saw this book he instantly recognized the title/cover and said to his son, "You are going to love this! It has a porcupine in it!" - last time he had read this one he was in seventh grade.
This is a Canadian classic and I like to think that the Mary Lawson book I brought along is a new Canadian classic. I'm looking forward to seeing what my buddy's family thinks of them.
Update - Nov. 17th 2018
I think my buddy's son finally finished this one but I'm not sure. It seems to have a permanent place on their coffee table along with a bunch of Kenneth Oppel books that the family is reading at the moment. Poor Judy has yet to crack open "Crow Lake"...maybe one fine day.
My mom hit one of her yearly book sales and found a paperback copy for herself before I could send her the one I found. Her story about how her original copy was lost had changed in the meantime and it was interesting to relate what she had originally told me back to her. Regardless, both she and I are very happy that she has a copy back in her possession again. Now we'll have to see if she'll loan it out to my niece.
Instinct told them that the way home lay to the west. And so the doughty young Labrador retriever, the roguish bull terrier and the indomitable Siamese set out through the Canadian wilderness. Separately, they would soon have died. But, together, the three house pets faced starvation, exposure, and wild forest animals to make their way home to the family they love.
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