Take an angry, troubled 15 year old boy with a ghost from his past. Put him on a ranch in the care of a tough teacher just as stubborn as he is. Add in horses, a devastating fire, and a younger brother to worry about and it all comes together in a powerful, life-changing event for Dare.
The first book and winner of the Alberta Culture Clarke Irwin Writing for Youth Award. The story of Shane Morgan, a teenage boy, and his widowed father finding their way to each other after the death of their mother and wife. Set in southern Alberta against a background of school, horses, rodeo, and new friendships. (Used as curriculum material in many schools.)
Shane, his dad, and Shane’s best friend, revisited a year later when Shane’s formerly alcoholic dad disappears while hauling a load of rodeo bulls to Montana. Mystery, humour, and a strong conservation issue involved.
This series of four novels all feature the same character, Steve Garrett, a guy in his late teens who has already done a lot of living. After running away as a twelve-year-old he did his growing up on the streets of Vancouver. In Brothers and Strangers he returns to live with his father and younger brother to try to straighten out his life. But his past catches up with him and in Stranger on the Run he finds himself working on a southern Alberta ranch alongside Jesse, a young Native guy, who is crusading to save a wild valley from development. As well as becoming close friends with Jesse and the ranch couple, Steve returns to high school where he meets Lynne, a very special young teacher, just a little older than he is. Pursued by the dangerous drug dealer he once worked for, Steve takes a perilous trip across the high country of Waterton-Glacier National Park and in Stranger on the Line finds himself in Montana working for an ex-jockey with a whole stable of washed-up racehorses. One thing leads to another and Steve winds up back in Alberta, racing a chuckwagon at the Calgary Stampede—and renewing his friendship with Lynne. But, again, his past intrudes and Steve finds himself back in Montana working for a crooked body shop owner. Then comes the message from his dad. Steve needs to come home to save his brother’s life. Here, in Blood Brothers, Steve stops running and faces Romero, the drug dealer, in a life-and-death confrontation that will change everything.
In this book of short stories for slightly younger children, a young girl comes to live on her grandparent’s ranch. In each story she has an adventure with an animal wild or tame. True to life stories that help develop kids’ empathy for animals.
These two high-interest, low vocabulary books are published by Orca in Victoria and have been translated into several languages across Europe. They are short and easy to read but have story lines and characters suitable from elementary grades through high school student—especially reluctant readers. Also excellent for ESL classes.
These two books feature teenage best friends, Lance and Red, as they face some serious situations including being kidnapped by a strung-out druggie in a powerful Corvette—which Red has to drive through rush hour traffic to take Lance to the hospital with a knife wound. In the second book the two boys are back, joined by Kat, a girl who can hold her own in any situation. When the three end up in a plane crash in the middle of nowhere all of them are tested to their limits.