Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod is American author Gary Paulsen’s account of participating in the iconic race. Paulsen, best known. Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod. Gary Paulsen, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $26 (p) ISBN Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod. Gary Paulsen, Author Harvest Books $15 (p) ISBN

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Gary soon realizes that he knows nothing about dogs. This is his memoir, of that e “But the beauty of the woods, the incredible joy of it is too alluring to be ignored, and I could not stand to be away from it–indeed, still can’t–and so I ran dogs simply to run dogs; to be in and part of the forest, the woods.

Paulsne Paulsen is crazy. Now I know why. Mar 03, Jacqueline Bussjaeger rated it it was amazing. It was, I would find later, essentially a normal Iditarod day – perhaps a bit calmer than most. Dec 24, Want to Read Currently Reading Read.

My strengths lie far more in the “city” environment – urbane manners, snarky wit, discerning judgment of food, drink, movies, plays, and other entertainments. Though the dangers of the Iditarod winterdsnce legion, more frightening still was the knowledge that he could not stop racing dogs of his own free will.


I may be a self-avowed city girl, far more interested in intellectual pursuits than the primal pitting of the human spirit against nature’s fury, but as I’ve lived and traveled here in the “Lower ’48” I’ve become more and more appreciative of exactly how unique wintterdance rare Alaska is in this age of near-overpopulation.

Although he was never a vary student, Paulsen developed a passion for reading at an early age. Gary has never run sled dogs except on his short runs to check his trap lines. Follow Us on Facebook. Something about those experiences, about the place, sticks with you. As the time draws near to the start of the Iditarod, Paulsen and his dogs are ready.

Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod

Paulsen’s style of writing made me smile in one chapter and want to cry in the next one. His tight narrative and laugh-out-loud wjnterdance about one of the most famous dog races in America is truly a gift.

Add his child to the picture. Beautifully descriptive and emotive without being wordy or pretentious.

Anyone who finishes this deserves millions. He also re-evaluates his life and decides that a simple life is better than the pursuit of money and material objects. Once Gary makes the decision to run the race he embarks on a comical lesson about himself and life in general.

He also spent some time in the army.

Pick up this book and laugh out loud! My strengths lie far more in the “city” environment – urbane manners, snarky wit, discerning judgmen In a slightly different world, I might have found this book completely incomprehensible.



Sep 07, Claire rated it really liked it. At first the dogs are a means of transportation and income, but Gary’s relationship with his team evolves until he decides to run them for pleasure.

They endured blinding wind, snowstorms, frostbite, dogfights, moose attacks, sleeplessness, hallucinations – and the relentless push to go on. For seventeen days, Paulsen and his team of fifteen dogs ran through breathtaking and treacherous Arctic terrain. The dogs not only find their own way home, but return long before Paulsen.

I have shelved Gary Paulsen’s books for many years without seeing this one. It was published in and it also is the inspiration for the Disney movie, Snow Dogs.

Gary Paulsen writes many young adult coming of age stories about the wilderness.

Winterdance – Wikipedia

Not only did I learn so much about the things involved in running and preparing for the Iditarod, but I also found myself laughing outloud at the most inappropriate times! Thanks for telling us about the problem. Paulsen was obsessed and wanted to race again.