Dear Gary Paulsen,
I never got to say goodbye to my dad. I never got to say, “I love you.” I never got to say, “If this is the last time I see you I want you to know that I will always love you and I promise that I’ll never forget you.”
I used to always cry and pity myself that my dad died. When I read Hatchet, I stopped feeling sorry for myself because I realized that I have it rough without my dad but there are way worse things in the world. I really knew what Brian was feeling emotionally, he felt alone and scared. That’s what I feel when I think of my dad being gone.
You made me realize that life is survival and we all need to face the facts and survive at the same time. Brian had to survive in the wilderness of Canada and that’s a lot worse than what we normally survive.
I read your book over and over again and every time I read it I understood the book, Brian’s emotions, and my life a little bit more. I finally realized that I had it good, and I learned what it’s like to grip the reality of my father’s death.
I’m guessing right now you think I’ve totally moved on and forgot about my dad, but that’s not even close to the truth. I still cry sometimes, but when I do I remember that my dad loved me and would stretch out to both ends of the earth for me. He is my guardian angel that keeps me safe. I bet Brian’s angel worked extra hard to give him the skills to survive and I enjoy those thoughts because I know that is what my dad does for me.
Your book had an awe-inspiring impact on me. I encourage you to write another series similar to Brian’s situation, maybe you could make the character’s name Nathan Firkins! With all respect, I say thank you.
With admiration and thanks,
Nathan Leonard Firkins