Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod is American author Gary Paulsen’s account of participating in the iconic race. Paulsen, best known. Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod. Gary Paulsen, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $26 (p) ISBN Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod. Gary Paulsen, Author Harvest Books $15 (p) ISBN

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There are moments in our life when we realize we are mere mortals. When word gets around that Paulsen plans to compete in the Iditarod, the local community rallies behind him by donating money, food, and paulwen gear.


I’m glad he at least kept his wits about him enough to remember what those around him said when they witnessed his lunacy. As Gary relates the wrecks, long walks home after losing the team, and other numerous mishaps during training, the reader begins to doubt his ability to undertake such a grueling adventure as the Iditarod. I got up and walked over to see what it was. One neighbor even donates his truck and drives Paulsen and the dogs up to Anchorage for the race.

Fueled by an all-consuming passion for running dogs, Paulsen entered the grueling 1,mile race across Alaska in dangerous ignorance and with fierce He draws on his experience as an avid outdoors man to write his amazing books, i. The ending was a bit abrupt for my taste.

Winterdance by Gary Paulsen | Scholastic

I learned that the men and women who drive dogsleds are paulseb into the rhythm of the ride; that there’s a harmony of unity in the dogs, the sled and the driver. Yep, that’s the part I was winterdnce about at 2: This is a 5-star book, but it’s got a handful of f-bombs thrown in at the end which I have to say were appropriate for the situation and not gratuitous at allwhich according to my own personal goodreads criteria knocks it down pauksen 4 stars.

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Paulsen is excellent at the sort of spare, elegant prose that nonetheless sticks in your mind. November Learn how and when to remove this template message.

It’s the kind of book that makes you laugh out loud in public.

It is, however, one of my favorite books of all time. Running away from home at the age of 14 and traveling with a carnival, Paulsen acquired a taste for adventure.

After more than a decade spent sailing all over the Pacific, Paulsen got back into dog sledding in From then on, nothing shocked me, but it sure did make vary laugh.

Paulsen’s inexperience causes problems right from the first day, when he takes a wrong turn that adds miles to his run. When Paulsen sleeps with his dogs his wife seems to express indifference. It was, I would find later, essentially a normal Iditarod day – perhaps a bit calmer than most.

Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod

He also created more snapshots and exploding moments than any other book I have read. I grew up in Anchorage in fact, I was born the year the race he describes took placeduring the transitional time when it was really changing from being a large Alaskan town to a small city, more similar wintredance the rest of the US than Alaska.

Paulsen was the recipient of the Margaret A.

His description of the beginning of the race is hilarious as he and his dogs run wjnterdance people’s backyards in an effort to find the course! Then i went back to bed. And this was the third time I’ve read this book! This book is incredible. This stands among the rare books that will get you looks for laughing out loud in the middle of the airport.


There is more adventure packed into these pages, that you would find, in a half a dozen other books.

Add his child to the picture. It is also funny, gripping and terrifying. I’ll bet I have worn out at least 10 copies just loaning it out! He’d have lived through bitter cold Minnesota winters even if he wasn’t a writer. And I learned that I would rather travel to darkest Peru, hot air balloon around the world, travel leagues under the sea, then run an Iditarod race.

Sep 08, Jaci rated it it was amazing. When his wife, Ruth, comes outside she finds him sitting quietly with the dogs, and Paulsen confesses to Ruth that when he is out with the dogs that he doesn’t want to come back. See 2 questions about Winterdance‚Ķ.

Paulsen was raised by his grandmother and aunts. Given that I’ve read it three times and recommended to no less than 50 people, there wonterdance been plenty of time for me to hear back from all those reluctant readers and not one has come back to me to tell me that they didn’t like it.