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Children's Fiction Exploration & Discovery


by (author) David Ward

Red Deer Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2008
Exploration & Discovery, General, Prehistory
Recommended Age
9 to 12
Recommended Grade
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2008
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Download Teacher’s Guide

Download Teacher’s Guide

Where to buy it


Twelve-year-old Jonah and his mother, a well-known photographer, are on a self-healing mission, exploring the natural beauty of the Queen Charlotte Islands. They are each trying in their own way to get over the tragic loss of father and husband who died in a rock climbing accident months before.

One day, a mysterious girl appears wading in the waters near their floathouse, and an even more mysterious mist saves Jonah from his own plunge off a clifftop, Jonah is plunged into a time travel adventure that takes him back 14,000 years when the Charlottes were one of the stops for the ancient peoples making their way from Asia over the Bering Strait and down through the Americas. It is a time when the seas were much lower than they are in the 21st century because of the proliferation of ice and the different climate - and so the map of the islands had changed significantly.

For Jonah this is a healing quest, teaming with Akilah, the girl from that other time who teaches him survival skills he has never dreamed of. There is menace in the confrontation with the Crossers - more recent arrivals from the Bering Strait - and from all manner of natural hazards. The burgeoning friendship with Akilah arouses all Jonah's generous instincts and yearning for love. Above all, he discovers personal strengths that help him get past the loss of his father, qualities and realizations that he brings back to his mother when the adventure is complete.


About the author


David Ward
est l'auteur des livres à succès Hockey sur le lac et Une belle nuit de hockey. Il a aussi écrit une collection
populaire sur le hockey. Il a vécu à Québec et à Vancouver et habite
maintenant à Portland en Oregon avec sa femme et ses enfants.


DAVID WARD is the author of the best-selling picture books The Hockey Tree and One Hockey Night. Raised in Quebec and Vancouver, he currently lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife & children. Visit him online at

David Ward's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"If you like the notion of traveling back in time, then Archipelago by David Ward is a must read for you. . . The plot is jam-packed with plenty of unpredictable action. . . This is a great book to read for pleasure whether you are 10-years-old or an adult. Ward will take his readers on a nail-biting adventure back into time, and they will not want to put the book down until it is finished."
Highly recommended"
CM Magazine

"Lovers of time travel will enjoy this book set in B.C.'s Queen Charlotte Islands. Jonah is accompanying his artist mother to the islands when an accident transports him back 14, 000 years to a time that is strikingly different. Yet his attraction to a stone-age Aboriginal girl is surprisingly modern."
Winnipeg Free Press

"David Ward's clear, direct prose keeps the plot lively, and his dialogues, especially those between Jonah and his mother, are lifelike and compelling."
ForeWord Magazine

"David Ward's clear, direct prose keeps the plot lively, and his dialogues, especially those between Jonah and his mother, are lifelike and compelling."
School Library Journal

Librarian Reviews


Jonah and his mother are trying to heal from the death of Jonah’s father by exploring the Queen Charlotte Islands. Strange events transport Jonah 14,000 years back in time where he meets a mysterious girl. Together they fight for survival on this fantastical adventure.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2009.

Other titles by David Ward