The Raiders

Suspense in the Arctic

May-31-2013

The Raiders is the title of the second book in The Inuk Quartet, written by Jorn Riel and illustrated by Helen Cann for readers ten to twelve-years-old and up. Both boys and girls will find strong characters to identify with. The story takes place around 1000 AD. At the beginning, Leiv, the Northman, and Apuluk and Narua, the Inuit brother and sister, experience spring and summer in Greenland on a farmstead. “Leiv, coming as he did from Iceland, wasn’t used to this much snow. He felt as though he was living in a world made only of ice crystals..... He had never imagined anything could be as beautiful as this Arctic landscape flooded with spring sunlight. “ (pp. 7-8) However, this beauty and peacefulness are broken by a raid made by two rough and wicked brothers who bring trouble wherever they go. Their ship travels freely in the high seas, and they have made raids in Norway, Ireland, even as far away as Markland, which we know as Labrador, Canada today. Rich in adventure, history, marine life, and lessons in survival in a dangerous climate, the novel is full of suspense. How will Leiv and his friends outwit the raiding brothers? Parents and teachers will find much to discuss in this story. Which culture, the Northmen’s or the Inuit’s, is better at problem-solving? What are the underlying values and priorities of each culture? Do you agree with their values? Are men and women treated equally? What are the contributions that men and women make to the survival of their group? What is the morality of each culture? The title of the first book is The Shipwreck; the third book’s title is The Snowstorm; and the fourth book has not been published yet.