God of the Brooks

A Story of Extreme Survival

Christian - Fiction
184 Pages
Reviewed on 05/31/2018
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Our family moved to Alaska in 1968. My father came to Fairbanks as a minister so, I grew up viewing life and the wilderness through eyes of faith.
My faith in God and the Holy Bible helped me tremendously when in 2007 I was stricken with a severe virus-caused Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. For months, I was confined to the bed. As I slowly began to recover, a journey that took 6 years, I began writing God of the Brooks. It was good therapy for me to accomplish something each day, even if but one page.
There are 2 more books in the hopper: God of the Gold and God of the Aurora.
God of the Gold should be out by early 2019.
The website, godofthebrooks.com, will be updated soon and will also eventually serve to illustrate all 3 books.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Sarah Scheele for Readers' Favorite

God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival by Bruce Hamilton is a unique tale of toughing it against the wilderness, told from a Christian perspective. The first-person account, fictional but pieced together from incidents throughout the author’s life, records a gritty tale of a man’s walk with God as a plane crash strands him in the arctic winter of Alaska. In the midst of a gripping saga of nature’s harshness and human resourcefulness, he approaches God with a closeness he’s never before experienced, and learns that his journey across Alaska in winter is the perfect forge for God to shape him into a wise and humble servant.

Few Christian books can wring your heart and soul like this, let alone leave you filled with such an awe for God. The inspiring authenticity of Bruce Hamilton’s account has a heart-pounding pull of complete honesty as every step of the hero’s journey, from bleeding on a desolate mountain cliff to building shelters and gathering food for himself, is brought before the reader’s eyes to enforce God’s complexity and wisdom. When a hunting trip gone wrong, a friend’s death, and a trek home that defies Frodo and Sam’s journey to Mordor in its intensity engulf the hero and the reader, that’s just as much a part of God’s character as the loving response to human need that He also continually exhibits throughout the story. As each day presents a new physical hardship accompanied by ingenuity with only one goal—to get home at last—God shines forth as the true hero of the story. With ice, snow, grizzlies, and a lot of prayer, God of the Brooks puts a spotlight on the Creator like almost no book I've ever read.

Jack Magnus

God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival is a Christian adventure novel written by Bruce Hamilton. He and Les had taken many a trip in Les’s Cessna in search of new places to hunt or fish, and today’s trip was no exception. They had decided to check out new territory north of the Brooks Range, and after their lunch stop at Cold Foot, continued on their way. Bruce had experienced his first big Alaskan adventure when he was nine years old, and his dad had taken him by float-plane to a lake that teemed with giant Northern Pike. Even decades later, he still got a thrill looking down at the wilderness that was Alaska. Les had been keeping careful track of the weather conditions that morning, but the weather changed abruptly, and soon the little plane was being bounced around by turbulence. Taking it up out of the storm’s reach only made things worse as the wings quickly iced up, and the plane started losing power. Then, a plateau appeared out of nowhere; a safe place to land, but the landing itself was a hard one, and only Bruce survived.

In his Christian adventure novel, God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival, Bruce Hamilton shares many of his own experiences during a lifetime spent in the Alaskan outdoors. I also love the outdoors and try to get in some hiking whenever I can, and have to admit that the lure of Alaska and all that open natural space has always appealed to my sense of adventure. Hamilton’s story is gripping and suspenseful. Reading Hamilton’s story, I marvelled at how anyone could survive prolonged exposure in the extreme cold of the Alaskan North Range. I was fascinated by Bruce’s account of getting off the plateau where the plane crashed and determining how he would survive and maximize his chances of being rescued. His discovery of the hot springs is a pivotal moment that had real impact. Hamilton’s story reads quite well; I could feel his exhaustion and refusal to give up, and I was impressed by the power of his faith, and its role in keeping him motivated and strong. God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival is most highly recommended.

Donna Gielow McFarland

God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival by Bruce Hamilton is a combination of a Christian gospel tract and a fictional adventure story of wilderness survival. The story begins in the month of October, as hunting partners crash their plane in the Brooks Range in Arctic Alaska. Only one man survives. He is injured and he has to use everything he ever learned about survival techniques if he wants to get out alive. With winter fast approaching and tundra and rivers difficult to cross, he makes the decision to wait until everything is frozen solid before walking hundreds of miles to get to the nearest road. During his time in the wilderness, he also walks a spiritual journey as he recognizes the providence of God and examines his own spirituality.

I found it amazing that there are enough known wilderness survival strategies for anyone to possibly make it through such an ordeal. Although it is a novel, Bruce Hamilton writes from his own experiences, having lived in Alaska for 50 years, and so many things ring true and the locations are all real. Hamilton has accompanying maps, photographs and illustrations, and they are gorgeous, but they are on his website instead of in the book. They really should be in the book. I also found the frequent spiritual reflections to be well-intentioned, but preachy in places. The language in these sometimes lengthy sections seems better suited to the pulpit than to a “sourdough” in Alaska. Nevertheless, the adventure was engaging and I eagerly kept reading to see what would happen next.