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In a year of mostly cancelled book events and shuttered brick & mortar bookstores, I got a little bit of good news regarding my book, Hostile Territory, in the Anchorage Newspaper. It was chosen as a favorite book for 2020.

Below is the text of the article regarding Hostile Territory:

Hostile TerritoryBy Paul Greci. Imprint. 352 pages, 2020. $17.99.

Food is on the minds of the four teenagers who find themselves thrust into a survival situation after an earthquake wipes out the leadership camp they’re attending in Paul Greci’s latest novel “Hostile Territory.” What begins as a survival tale, with the kids trying to reach safety from a remote Alaska location, morphs into a political thriller, as they learn there’s a lot more going on than just a natural disaster. Greci is emerging as the state’s best author of young adult fiction. An educator who targets kids in the age range when many quit reading, he keeps them engrossed with a fast-moving plot and plenty of cliffhangers. It’s a formula that will keep adults turning pages as well.

It has been my life’s work as an educator and a writer to get reluctant readers to open a book and keep turning the pages. My first book, Surviving Bear Island, was a Junior Library Guild Selection in the category that’s guaranteed to engage even the most reluctant of readers.

While I hope that my stories will engage avid as well as reluctant readers, when I write I keep that population of struggling and reluctant teen readers I worked with for much of my teaching career front and center. Here’s a link to a post on my thoughts about engaging struggling and reluctant readers.

Paul Greci is the author of The Wild Lands (Macmillan 2019) and Surviving Bear Island (Move Books 2015), a 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and a 2016 Scholastic Reading Club Selection and Hostile Territory (Macmillan Jan. 28, 2020), an Anchorage Daily News Best Book of 2020. Forthcoming is Follow the River (Move Books 2021) . You can order all of Paul’s books here.

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Arctic Ocean June 1989 copy

I know this pandemic has had impacts on everyone both professionally and personally. We’ve experienced one death in our extended family and know several people who’ve contracted the virus.

As a writer I had a novel, Hostile Territory, come out about 6 weeks before the shutdowns began in March, and, for good reason, had six book events cancelled for the Spring and early summer. Then the branch of Macmillan that published Hostile Territory closed. My two books with them (The Wild Lands and Hostile Territory) will be reassigned to another house within Macmillan and will still be available in hardcover, paperback, e-book and audio book anywhere books are sold.

Hostile Territory

I have another forthcoming novel, Follow The River (Move Books), where the release date has been delayed due to the pandemic.

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My job as a Special Education Teacher (grades K thru 3) has bounced between in-person and remote instruction. I’ve adjusted to teaching with a mask on while in-person and consciously taking screen-breaks when my job is more zoom-heavy like it is now. Even though I know that zoom instruction pales in comparison to in-person, I am continually amazed and impressed by the resolve my students have to show up and try. As a writer, that’s my basic formula for seeing a novel through from start to finish—show up and try.

As I look at what I’ve written above, I know that I am extremely fortunate, and that others have lost close family and friends, have seen their jobs evaporate, and seen their own children significantly impacted by distance education. I hope everyone’s lives are re-balanced in the near future with the prospects of a vaccine on the horizon.

During the pandemic, I’ve taken solace in the outdoor spaces abundant in Alaska. While taking a hike, a snowshoe, a run, or a ski, feels normal on one level, in the backdrop there’s still this feeling that all is not well with the world, like we’re all moving about on a thin sheet of ice.

Below are a few recent photos of landscapes I travel through that feed my soul.

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Moose in the birch forest

morning light nov. 7 2020

Book Covers copy

Paul Greci is the author of The Wild Lands (Macmillan 2019) and Surviving Bear Island (Move Books 2015), a 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and a 2016 Scholastic Reading Club Selection and Hostile Territory (Macmillan Jan. 2020). Forthcoming is Follow the River (Move Books Winter 2020-21) . You can order all of Paul’s books here.

Thanks for stopping by. (more…)

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HostileTerritory_Jacket_ForPG copy

 

Hostile Territory, the novel I wrote during the last two years of my father’s life, comes out in a couple of months. Not a day goes by where I don’t think of my father. I think he would’ve liked this story. I’m sad that he didn’t get to see the book in print but I have lots of memories of writing it while sitting by his bedside.

Below is a snippet of the latest review, spoilers excluded.

…The writing style and details bring this book to life; readers will feel like they are in Alaska alongside the characters. The challenges the teens undergo are well drawn and believable. VERDICT Recommended for teenagers who like postapocalyptic adventure or are fans of Gary Paulsen’s Hatchet.—School Library Journal

From the Jacket Flap:

In Paul Greci’s Hostile Territory, a catastrophic earthquake strands four teens in the Alaskan wilderness―and leaves them without a civilization to return to.

Josh and three other campers at Simon Lake are high up on a mountain when an earthquake hits. The rest of the camp is wiped out in a moment―leaving Josh, Derrick, Brooke, and Shannon alone, hundreds of miles from the nearest town, with meager supplies, surrounded by dangerous Alaskan wildlife.

After a few days, it’s clear no rescue is coming, and distant military activity in the skies suggests this natural disaster has triggered a political one.

Josh and his fellow campers face a struggle for survival in their hike back home―to an America they might not recognize.

The book pubs. on Jan 29, 2020–It’s available in hardcover, ebook, and audio. You can pre-order it now if you like.

Book Covers copy

Paul Greci is the author of The Wild Lands (Macmillan 2019) and Surviving Bear Island (Move Books 2015), a 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and a 2016 Scholastic Reading Club Selection. Forthcoming is Follow the River (Move Books March 2020) and Hostile Territory (Macmillan Jan. 2020). You can order all of Paul’s books here.

Thanks for stopping by.

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To kick off Alaska Book Week, I’ll be doing a First Friday Book Signing at Alaskana Raven Books & Things in the Co-op Plaza in Fairbanks on Friday October 4th from 5 to 8. I’ll be signing copies of Surviving Bear Island and The Wild Lands and I’ll have info. about my new books coming out in December and January. Please stop by and say hi if you are making the First Friday rounds in Fairbanks.71498891_2873289722699056_4169838513367285760_n

Here’s a link to the list of events happening all over the state of Alaska from October 3rd through the 19th: Alaska Book Week Schedule and Events

Book Covers copy

Paul Greci is the author of The Wild Lands (Macmillan 2019) and Surviving Bear Island (Move Books 2015), a 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and a 2016 Scholastic Reading Club Selection. Forthcoming is Follow the River (Move Books March 2020) and Hostile Territory (Macmillan Jan. 2020). You can order all of Paul’s books here.

Thanks for stopping by.

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Screen Shot FTR new release

My middle grade novel, Follow the River is a Number #1 new release on Amazon in the Children’s Water Sports Category. It comes out in March 2020.

From the jacketflap: When Billy and his dad are injured, Tom summons the courage to get back on the water to save them. This time, he must travel in a rickety old homemade canoe through the Alaska wilderness to get help. But it’s not just the canoe and the terrain he has to worry about—he’s surrounded by adversaries. Are his skills enough to fight them off or will his journey be cut short and Billy and his father left stranded?

Book Covers copy

Paul Greci is the author of The Wild Lands (Macmillan 2019) and Surviving Bear Island (Move Books 2015), a 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and a 2016 Scholastic Reading Club Selection. Forthcoming is Follow the River (Move Books March 2020) and Hostile Territory (Macmillan Jan. 2020). You can order all of Paul’s books here.

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