Runner-up for the 2009 Chocolate Lily Book Award and commended for the 2009 Best Books for Kids & Teens
In 1909, 13-year-old Luc Godin and his family arrive in British Columbia from Quebec only to discover that the house they thought they’d move into hasn’t been built. So the Godins have to make due with living in a railway boxcar with three other families.
Luc’s father and the many other newcomers to the Fraser Valley have come to work in the lumber industry. Their new home still has vestiges of the wilderness, and Luc and his family find find pioneering life difficult, especially as French speakers in a world of English. Luc’s father, who becomes a teamster in one of the many lumber mills, is old-fashioned. Horses are what he knows, while Luc has an eye for the modern, particularly the new-fangled bicycles and occasional automobiles.
However an accident with a bicycle has profound consequences for Luc and highlights the clash between the old and the new, the settled East and the brash frontier.