Rascal, by Sterling North, is an autobiographical story of a boy growing up in the semi-wilds of southern Wisconsin during the years of World War I, 1917-1918. From the time Sterling adopts an orphaned baby raccoon, we are led through a series of heart-warming adventures and misadventures. My favorite episode is when Sterling and Rascal accompany Sterling's father on a trip to northern Wisconsin, where they explore the swift waters and fishing holes found along the Bois Brule River.
Last summer our family kayaked this river, and it was sweet to know that it probably looks much today like it did in the early 1900s. We half-expected to meet Sterling and Rascal fishing for trout out of some quiet eddy.