Go Ahead, Get Him Started

bargain.JPGNext time you’re in River City Books ask store manager Jon Lee what he thinks about The Cruelest Miles by Gay and Laney Salisbury. As I have seen on more than one occasion, it’s not difficult to get Jon to sing the book’s praises.

The best part is that if you listen to his pitch in the immediate future — and you’re won over by it — you can pick up the book for well below the cover price. River City Books is currently carrying the hardcover edition of “The Cruelest Miles” for just $6.99.

If you’d like to know more about the book before you reach the store, here’s a description of what Jon would tell you is an amazing story:

In 1925, a deadly diphtheria epidemic swept through icebound Nome, Alaska. The life-saving serum was a thousand miles away, and a blizzard was brewing. Airplanes could not fly in such conditions: only the dogs could do it. Racing against death, 20 dog teams relayed the serum across the Alaskan wilderness as newspapers nationwide headlined the drama, enthralling an entire generation.

The heroic dash to Nome inspired the annual Iditarod Dog Sled Race in Alaska and immortalized Balto, the lead dog whose arrival in Nome over a snow-blown trail was an American legend in the making. His bronze statue still stands in New York City’s Central Park, in dedication to the “Endurance, Fidelity and Intelligence” of the dogs that saved Nome. This is their story, the greatest dog story never fully told, until now.

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