01 March 2007


Deathwatch by Robb White
I.L. 9-12
228 pages

I. Synopsis- The book opens up with a city man, Madec, hunting bighorns in the desert. He has hired a young high school graduate, Ben, to guide him through the desert to show him where the bighorns roam. They start arguing when Ben tells Madec to wait to shoot until he has seen the horns again. Yet, Madec shoots anyways and the result is an old prospector is shot and killed. Madec offers Ben a lot of money if he won’t report the accident. Ben refuses and Madec forces him, at gunpoint, to strip down to just his trousers and to run. They are, at the least distance, forty-five miles from the highway. Now, Ben must try to outwit Madec just to survive in the desert, yet Madec is always one stop ahead of him.

II. Evaluation of Work as Literature- The point of view was good, yet if the author wanted teens to identify with Ben more, then he should have written it in first person instead of limited omniscient. Yet, I did enjoy that it was limited so one was held in suspense about what Madec was up to and how many steps ahead of Ben he was. Also, such a point of view was good for the end of the book so that you know Ben feels, yet you have to rely on everyone’s reactions and words to know what they’re thinking.

III. Personal Comments- Overall, I thought that this was a good book, but some of the action scenes, which there are a good number of, were confusing at time. There is too much in too few a time span which causes the reader to become quickly confused. Also, I don’t think that it shows it very realistically in one major manor: how would a city man, who needs a guide showing him where to hunt the bighorns know everything he does about the desert? Such as where the old prospector’s cave? Some of that just blew me away for if I was in Madec’s position, I wouldn’t a clue as to what to do.

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