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Heritage House Publishing Spring 2021

Lost on the Prairie
By (author): MaryLou Driedger
MaryLou Driedger


Wandering Fox - Victoria



Product Form:


Form detail:

Paperback , Trade


Juvenile: Age (years) 8 - 12
May 28, 2021
$14.95 CAD


7in x 5 in

Page Count:

224 pages
Heritage House
Wandering Fox
JUVENILE FICTION / Historical / Canada / Post-Confederation (1867-)
Children’s / Teenage fiction: Action and adventure stories|Children’s / Teenage fiction: Religious fiction|Children’s / Teenage fiction: Family and home stories|Children’s / Teenage fiction: Historical fiction|Children’s / Teenage personal and social topics: Families and family members|Children’s / Teenage personal and social topics: Death and bereavement|Children’s / Teenage personal and social topics: Diversity and inclusion|Children’s / Teenage personal and social topics: First experiences and growing up|c 1900 to c 1909|For primary education|For middle / preparatory school education|Interest age: from c 8 years

Set between Kansas and Saskatchewan in 1907, this middle-grade novel follows a young boy who gets separated from his family en route to Canada and must find his way alone across the immense prairie landscape.

Following the sudden death of his eldest brother, twelve-year-old Peter is chosen by his father to travel by train from Kansas to Saskatchewan to help set up the new family homestead. But when Peter's boxcar becomes uncoupled from the rest of the train somewhere in South Dakota, he finds himself lost and alone on the vast prairie.

For a sheltered boy who has only read about adventures in books, Peter is both thrilled and terrified by the journey ahead. Along the way, he faces real dangers, from poisonous snakes to barn fires; meets people from all walks of life, including famous author Mark Twain; and grows more resourceful, courageous, and self-reliant as he makes his way across the Midwest to the Canadian border, eventually reaching his new home in Drake, Saskatchewan. The journey expands Peter's view of the world and shows him that the bonds of family and community, regardless of background, are universal and filled with love. Packed with excitement and adventure, this coming-of-age novel features a strong and likeable young protagonist and paints a realistic portrait of prairie life in the early twentieth century.

MaryLou Driedger's curiosity and love of learning have taken her to some fifty destinations across the globe. As an educator, she has taught in three different countries and is the recipient of a Manitoba Teacher of the Year award. As a writer, has been a columnist for Winnipeg Free Press and The Carillon, and her freelance work has been published in numerous periodicals, anthologies, travel guides, institutional histories, and curriculums. MaryLou chronicles her adventures on her popular daily blog, maryloudriedger2.wordpress.com.

Targeted print, online, and broadcast media outreach (interviews, features, reviews):

  • Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, Booklist, Quill & Quire, Prairie Books Now, 49th Shelf Kids, Island Parent, Winnipeg Free Press, The Carillon, Canadian Mennonite, Globe and Mail, Best Books for Kids and Teens, Canadian Children's Book News, CM magazine, CBC Winnipeg, Golden West Radio (Prairies)


  • Book launch at McNally Robinson Winnipeg
  • Author readings at Winnipeg schools, Winnipeg Public Library, Mennonite Heritage Village (Steinbach) 

Online promotion:

  • Social media campaign via author’s daily blog “What Next?,” and on her Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and E-newsletter feeds, updated daily. 

Potential blurbers:

  • Dora Dueck, Harriet Zaidman, Colleen Nelson, Beryl Young, Joan Thomas, Anita Daher (president of the Canadian Writers Union)

Promotion to school, library, historical, and literary organizations:

  • Reading Council of Greater Winnipeg, Manitoba Museum, Winnipeg Railway Museum, Western Development Museum (Saskatoon), Manitoba Writers Guild, Canadian Mennonite University, Telling Tales Festival, CANSCAIP Saskatchewan writing conference, Thin Air Festival (Winnipeg), Canadian Writers Union, When Words Collide (Calgary), BCLA Summer Reading Club 

Marketing and promo deliverables:

  • Electronic ARC 
  • Bookmark
  • Press release
  • Online banner

For more information contact
[email protected]

Lost on the Prairie is a terrific read and full of great adventures. The author really lets you get inside the hero Peter’s head. I was holding my breath in so many places in the book including when Peter almost missed the train in Winnipeg. I really admired the research that was done to make the story authentic. I loved that Mark Twain is in the book as a real person. I also liked the combination of fiction and real-life, and the family photos that were included. I look forward to the author’s next book.”
—Beryl Young, award-winning author for children

Lost on the Prairie had my attention from the first line to the last. I loved the plot, the characters, the quick pace, the details incorporated that made the time period come alive, the rich language and clever phrases that often made me chuckle... In short, I loved everything about the book. Kids and teachers are going to love it, too. and I hope the book has a long and happy life on the bestseller list where it surely belongs.”
—Larry Verstraete, award-winning children’s writer

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