Seekers (novel series)

Seekers (novel series)

Infobox Novel series
name = Seekers
books = The Quest Begins Great Bear Lake Smoke Mountain
author = Erin Hunter


image_caption = The cover of "The Quest Begins"
cover_artist = Wayne McLoughlin
country = United Kingdom
language = English
genre = Teen literature, fantasy
publisher = HarperCollin
pub_date = May 2008 – present
media_type = Print

"Seekers" is a children's novel series published under the pseudonym of Erin Hunter, written the same team of authors who created the "Warriors" series. It revolves around the three young bear cubs, Kallik, Lusa, and Toklo, when they lose their mothers and are left to fend for themselves.

The first book of the series, "The Quest Begins", was written by Tui Sutherland and published on May 27, 2008. "Great Bear Lake", the second of the series, is being written by Cherith Baldry, and is due to be released on January 14, 2009.

Publication history

The series is expected to contain a total of six books, written by the various members of the Erin Hunter writing team: Tui Sutherland, Cherith Baldry, Kate Cary, and Vicky Holmes. The series was originally called "The Clawed Path", as the journey the four bears make through all six books in the series is referred to as "the clawed path". At the very last moment the title was changed so that the titles would look similar to the "Warriors" series. Holmes was initially unhappy with the change, but has since said that she has come to like it and the way it looks on the books.cite web|url=http://warriorswishs.proboards75.com/index.cgi?board=tours&action=display&thread=7671&page=1|title=Warrior's Wish Interview With Erin Hunter|work=Warrior's Wish Forum|accessdate=2008-05-07]

The first novel of the series, "The Quest Begins", was first featured on the HarperCollin's FirstLook Program in November 2007.cite web|url=http://www.harpercollinschildrens.com/HarperChildrens/Members/firstlook/index.aspx?titleid=1220&WT.mc_id=NEWS_AUTK_EH-SKRS-FL_111507|title=FirstLook Edition of The Quest Begins|work=HarperCollin's First Look|accessdate=2007-11-01] Readers who signed up for the program had a chance to read an early edition of this book, an Advanced Reading Copy, before it was published in stores. The reviews of those who received an ARC of "The Quest Begins" can be found [http://www.harpercollinschildrens.com/HarperChildrens/Kids/BookDetail.aspx?isbn13=9780060871222&BDMode=3 here] .

Overview

The books following the adventures of three North American bears - Lusa the black bear, Toklo the grizzly, and Kallik the polar bear - who later meet a fourth bear, a grizzly cub by the name of Ujurak, and help him make a long and difficult journey to the deepest Arctic where he will learn the true nature of his destiny.

After a series of extraordinary events bring all four bears together, they set out on a long and dangerous journey, in order to discover something vitally important, not just for themselves, but for every one of their species. The books are set a little way into the future, where the lives of all wild animals have been severely compromised by human encroachment on their habitat and natural sources of food. All these three kinds of bears have forgotten how to be truly "wild", which is a lesson they must learn as they travel from their birth-dens to help their very special companion.

Books

"The Quest Begins"

Something is very wrong in the natural world. Animals and humans battle against harsh winters, scorching summers, and violent storms. As their territory diminishes, the bears lose their way and when spring arrives, the thin and hungry bears have to fight for every mouthful of food.

In the night skies, the star animals revolve around the Pathway Star, the one still point in the whirling skies. It brings together three bears from different species, each with a tale of extreme hardship. Kallik has lived her life on the ice with her mother and brother. Lusa has never left the zoo where she was born. And Toklo roams the forest with his mother and younger brother, who has always been ill.

Suddenly separated from those who have always cared for them, these three bears are learning to survive in the wild. With the bear-shaman Ujurak, the bears embark on a long and dangerous quest. They travel through magnificent and often hostile landscapes to the frozen north, where the swirling lights of the Aurora Borealis guide the bears to their journey’s end beyond the stars.

"Great Bear Lake"

Very little information is known about the second volume of the series. During an online chat with the writing team in January 2008, Victoria Holmes stated that she was thinking of the title "Great Bear Lake".cite web|url=http://www.wandsandworlds.com/community/node/2998|title=Erin Hunter Chat #4 Transcript - January 19, 2008|work=Wands and Worlds|accessdate=2008-03-16] In the February 2008, an AuthorTracker email from Erin Hunter was released, confirming that the title would indeed be "Great Bear Lake". It was also revealed that Cherith Baldry was currently writing the book, and that she was nearly finished.cite web|url=http://www.warriorcats.com/warriorshell.html|title=Erin Hunter AuthorTracker Message Archive|work=WarriorCats.com|accessdate=2008-03-16]

A short summary of "Great Bear Lake" was later discovered on the [http://www.nanowrimo.org/ NaNoWriMo] website: In "Seekers Book Two", the four central characters—Kallik, Lusa, Toklo, and Ujurak—are united for the first time as they begin their long journey in search of destiny, hope, and what it truly means to be a bear in the wild. A gathering of bears beside a remote lake seems like the ideal place to learn from their elders, but not all the bears have their best interests at heart, and soon one of the four is in very grave danger.cite web|url=http://ywp.nanowrimo.org/node/414758|title=NaNoWriMo's Stump the Librarian Program|work=Tavia Stewart|accessdate=2007-11-16]

"Smoke Mountain"

It is confirmed that the third book in the Seekers series is titled "Smoke Mountain". The cover for "Smoke Mountain" can be seen on Tui Sutherland's blog.

Characters

*Kallik – Kallik is a female polar bear of the three bears, who is forced to leave her home with her mother and brother when the ice begins to melt. Like all other polar bears, she depends on her mother to teach her how to hunt and survive until she is old enough to do it on her own. Her brother Taqqiq is her favorite playmate, but he is restless and has trouble paying attention. Kallik is a good learner, and is anxious to know the secrets her mother has to impart. However, her anxiety can sometimes take over her and cause her to worry or be afraid of things like burn-sky (summer), when the ice will melt and the polar bears will go hungry.

*Lusa – Lusa is the only bear of the three that has ever lived in captivity. She is the tiny black bear, being born in a zoo and never having looked beyond the cages. This included, she is also the only of the three to have lived with her father and mother. While her mother was also born in a zoo, her father used to live in the wild. Lusa loves to hear about life in the wild, and longs to see the forests and the mountains for herself some day. Her father however considers it bad for her to associate with such things. Lusa is the kind of creature to explore her territories, wanting to know more of the outside world. She, like all black bears, is gifted with the ability to climb trees, which gives her a great advantage.

*Toklo – Toklo is the only boy of the group of bears, a grizzly bear. He was born in the woods to Oka, his mother, and ever since then been roaming about with her and his brother, Tobi. Toklo loves to play and have fun, but Tobi is very ill. Instead of learning to hunt and fish, Toklo spends much of his time watching his mother care for Tobi. He is very jealous of his younger brother, whom he feels gets all the attention and leaves none of it for Toklo. He is probably the least social of the trio. He can be snappish and stubborn, longing to be like the spirit bear that is singled out in the stars - the North Star. But he has a soft spot in him too, expressed most of the time with Ujurak. Toklo likes to keep to himself, anyways.

*Ujurak – Ujurak is another grizzly bear, befriended by Toklo when the older bear rescues him from the smooth pelts (humans). The most unusual thing about the small cub is that he's a shape shifter. He has the mysterious power to change into any other animal, except most of the time he doesn't have a choice in the matter of "what" he turns into and usually gets himself into dangerous situations by turning into quite edible prey. Ujurak is shown so far as a caring bear, not wanting violence as shown when he asks Toklo to not harm a black bear when she tries to eat him as a rabbit. He is all alone, being that his mother is long gone. The small bear is somewhat awkward and clumsy, not helping with the whole "shifting into prey" incidents.

*Oka – Oka is the grizzly bear mother of young Toklo and Tobi. She has a ferocious temper, as shown when she attacked the human zoo keeper. Her first cubs all died, so it made her especially protective of Tobi when he was sick, and when he died, it tore her apart. Toklo often finds himself wondering if Oka even loves him at all, which is made all the much worse when she abandons him, unable to deal with the fact that Toklo might die as well. She is captured by the humans and put in a zoo where she meets Lusa the black bear. When she attacks a zoo keeper out of rage and depression, Lusa tells her that she will find her cub Toklo and tell him that she, Oka, loves him. Oka is later put to sleep, in fear that she might attack more zoo keepers or visitors.

*Nisa – Nisa is Kallik's and Taqqiq's mother. When the ice starts to melt earlier than usual, she decides that instead of fleeing to land, she and the cubs must stay on the ice and hunt or they will all die. She dies tragically when a Killer Whale attacks her and Kallik. This is when Taqqiq and Kallik are separated, starting Kallik's great Journey to the Land of the Ice bears. She guides Kallik.

References


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