Praise

“Some parents will doubtless think the adventure James Campbell took his daughter on was irresponsibly dangerous or just plain crazy. But as a father myself, I’m in envious awe of the bold decision he made and the clarity with which he made it. As Braving It poignantly demonstrates, there is no better teacher than deep wilderness. Here is the essence of good writing—and good parenting, too.”

Hampton Sides, author of In the Kingdom of Ice

 

“Braving It, the book, is a metaphor for the wilderness—the call of the wild—that James Campbell evokes in this masterfully told story. Every time I set the book down, I pondered the lessons learned, and couldn’t wait for my next sojourn into its pages. When it ended, I longed for the adventure to continue and pined for the beauty of Alaska. So I picked it up and read it again, savoring every page.”

Eric Blehm, author of The Last SeasonFearless, and Legend

 

Braving It—tender, wise, translucent—is not just an Alaskan classic, but a parenting classic. I read it with great fondness, hunger, and a deep satisfaction.”

Rick Bass, author of The Lives of Rocks and Why I Came West

 

“This is a guide book for the heart, step-by-step instructions on how to fall in love with Alaska—the hard work and fear, the thrilling adventure and awe. Along the way, we are given an honest and touching portrait of a middle-aged man coming to terms with his own limitations even as he learns to set his adolescent daughter free from the confines of childhood. A wonderful book for any mental traveler who has yearned to experience Alaska.”

Eowyn Ivey, author of The Snow Child

 

“Any of us who’ve watched daughters grow up to be strong and capable in the backcountry will delight in this book—it’s a wonderful new world in many ways!”
Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature and Wandering Home

 

“In this wonderful book, James Campbell and his teenage daughter set off on a great adventure to one of the most beautiful, and often perilous, places on earth—the Arctic wilderness of Alaska. They face many challenges—whitewater rapids, grizzly bears, bone-numbing cold—but none as daunting for Campbell as guiding his daughter across the great divide between childhood and maturity. Set against a primal landscape of mountains and fast-flowing rivers, Braving It is as simple and powerful as any fairy tale.”

John Hildebrand, author of Reading the River and The Heart of Things

 

“As a father of daughters and lover of adventure, I found Braving It to be spot on—riveting, profound, open-eyed, and deeply touching. Campbell’s struggle to understand and measure up to the stark and stunning Alaskan wilderness and, more importantly, to his teenage daughter—to find his place in the lives of both—becomes our struggle, too. A must-read for every striving parent and every teen striving to understand his or her parents.”

Dean King, author of Skeletons on the Zahara and The Feud

 

Braving It is a beautiful and original book, an antidote to the screenification of modern life. As a father enters the country of middle age, and a daughter edges toward adulthood, they share an epic Alaskan adventure. Among the dangers they encounter is an unexpected one: fleeting time. Countering this is the gift the father gives the daughter and the writer gives the reader: the gift of the elemental now, of moments of wind, fire, water, snow, beauty. And of equally primal moments of human love and connection.”

David Gessner, author of All the Wild that Remains: Edward Abbey, Wallace Stegner and the American West

 

“If your idea of a good time is hordes of mosquitoes and wind chills of 50 below, you are not your average dad. And if you invite your teenage daughter to enjoy these with you and she says yes, she may not be your average daughter. This is a great story of what it means to love, trust and test your kids.”
Lenore Skenazy, author of Free-Range Kids 

 

Braving It is a book full of hope.  At a time when we are concerned with ravages upon the environment, this story explores the wonder and unspoiled beauty of the Alaskan wild. And at a time when our youth are consumed with technology, social media, and a sense of entitlement, we read about a teenage girl who not only chooses to venture into the wilderness, but relishes the experience. This book gives me hope for our landscape and our youth.”

Larry Beck, San Diego State University professor and author of Moving Beyond Treeline

 

“Rarely has a book captured so well the unknown wilderness of parenting, of what it is to be a teenager and what it is for a father to learn to trust. Braving It is also a kind of guide to stepping outside one’s comfort zone. A must read for anyone trying to understand the father-daughter bond and anyone who loves wildness.”

Melissa Arnot, mountaineer

 

“Braving It is part call to adventure, part coming of age story, and part celebration of family. A thoroughly engaging and thought-provoking read.”

Daniel L. Dustin, Professor of Outdoor Recreation, University of Utah