Summer at the Cannery
Trafford Publishing, Jan 13, 2005
Hello to all children who love to read. This is a story of 12-year-old Ryan Stanley whose father was killed in the Second World War with the Japanese nation. Born in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, Ryan misses having a dad. And, although he loves his mother, he is unhappy that she cannot provide everything he wants. For this reason, Ryan's mother takes a job at North Pacific Cannery on the Skeena River to earn extra money for the things her son needs. Ryan has become a selfish child, caught up in his demands for the things he thinks he should have. And, because the Japanese killed his father, and because he is partial to playing with only Caucasian children, he is faced with the dilemma of either not having any friends at all, or of making friends with children of other cultures. At North Pacific, Ryan meets up with Danny Judson, 11, a native North American born in Kincolith, British Columbia on the Nass River. Danny has his own problems. He spends every school year at the Port Alberni Residential School and feels that he misses out on his native culture. Because of this he has developed an irritating habit of borrowing things and not returning them. Both boys team up with Kiyoshi Sakamoto, 13, a Japanese boy born in Vancouver, British Columbia. Kiyoshi struggles with the alienation his family experienced when they lost most of their possessions and were evacuated to the interior of the province during the Second World War. During this time his mother died. Kiyoshi is inclined to be cautious and, above all, obedient to his father. Together, the three boys secretly enjoy exciting adventures exploring the Skeena River on an old raft. Ryan makes a trip gillnet fishing with his Uncle Ted which ends in disaster. From this experience he realizes that he really wants to be with his new friends. Eventually the boys find Uncle Ted's missing skiff, and without asking him, borrow it for further and wider adventures on the river. This leads to the reality of what could have been a major disaster. In the end, the three boys learn not to lie and deceive one another and not to borrow things and forget to return them. And Ryan agrees with his mother that he must make amends for his own selfishness. By the time they have to return to their respective homes all three boys have learned to like and value each others friendship.
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