Review: Finding Fortune – Pippa Goodhart

The blog has been a bit slow lately, but I’m working on more reviews and hopefully some more art content. I know it’s summer, but I started an internship last week and things have been busy!

This is a book I read a while ago, it’s a really interesting read with lots of adventure and a fantastic setting. I also love the cover, it is beautifully designed and really captures the atmosphere of the book.


Finding Fortune

Pippa Goodhart

Catnip, 2013

Adventure, Historical Fiction 10+, 12+

When Ida’s father decides to go to Klondike and join in the gold rush, she is determined to go with him and avoid the boarding school her stern grandmother is trying to send her to. She plans to stow away, and join her Fa on his great adventure. Together they undertake long voyages, cross treacherous mountain passes and begin the seemingly impossible task of finding their fortune.

This is an interesting historical read, exploring an exciting time period. The fact that Ida, a young girl, was involved in the gold rush is also of interest. The book makes it very clear that places like Klondike were considered unsuitable for ladies. It is also a very atmospheric novel – the icy winters are chilly, and the cramped condition of the ship uncomfortable. The close relationship between Ida and her father was enjoyable to read, and there was also a good cast of supporting characters such as Ida’s strict grandmother (‘I am tolerably well, but not as well as I look, you know’), and their Klondike neighbours, young couple Nathan and Carrie. However, I felt the ‘bad’ characters were far too obvious, and their actions were often predictable. The changing between the third person narrative and Ida’s letters in the first person also jarred at times. However, overall this was an engaging historical read, with a convincing sense of adventure, hardship and danger. Finding Fortune will appeal to fans of books like Eva Ibbotson’s Journey to the River Sea.



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