Cover image for Call me Francis Tucket
Call me Francis Tucket
Paulsen, Gary.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers, 1996.

Physical Description:
97 pages ; 20 cm
Having separated from the one-armed trapper who taught him how to survive in the wilderness of the Old West, fifteen-year-old Francis gets lost and continues to have adventures involving dangerous men and a friendly mule.
General Note:
"A Yearling book."

Originally published: New York : Delacorte Press, 1995.

Sequel to: Mr. Tucket.
Reading Level:

10 and up.

1050 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 5.5 3.0 14136.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 5.5 6 Quiz: 01734 Guided reading level: W.
Added Title:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Y FICTION Young Adult Mass Market Paperback Young Adult
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Reading List
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Young Adult

On Order



Alone. Francis Tucket now feels more confident that he can handle almost anything. A year ago, on the wagon train, he was kidnapped from his family by a Pawnee hunting party. Then he escaped with the help of the mountain man, Mr. Grimes. Now that he and Mr. Grimes have parted ways, Francis is heading west on his Indian pony, crossing the endless prairie, trying to find his family.

After a year with Mr. Grimes, Francis has learned to live by the harsh code of the wilderness. He can cause a stampede, survive his own mistakes, and face up to desperadoes. But when he rescues a little girl and her younger brother, Francis takes on more than he bargained for.

Author Notes

Gary Paulsen was born on May 17, 1939 in Minnesota. He was working as a satellite technician for an aerospace firm in California when he realized he wanted to be a writer. He left his job and spent the next year in Hollywood as a magazine proofreader. His first book, Special War, was published in 1966. He has written more than 175 books for young adults including Brian's Winter, Winterkill, Harris and Me, Woodsong, Winterdance, The Transall Saga, Soldier's Heart, This Side of Wild, and Guts: The True Stories Behind Hatchet and the Brian Books. Hatchet, Dogsong, and The Winter Room are Newbery Honor Books. He was the recipient of the 1997 Margaret A. Edwards Award for his lifetime achievement in writing for young adults.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 5-8. In this sequel to Mr. Tucket (1969; rereleased 1994), 15-year-old Francis has parted company with one-armed mountain man Jason Grimes and joined a wagon train headed for Oregon. While on a hunting expedition Francis gets caught up in a buffalo stampede, becoming separated from the wagons and hopelessly lost. His troubles are compounded when outlaws steal his horse, gun, and supplies, leaving him with only their abused mule. Down but never out, Francis, using all the survival skills he can muster, rebounds, managing to regain all his possessions (and then some) and save two orphaned children. No one writes better survival fiction than Paulsen, and Francis is a particularly appealing character--savvy enough to defend himself against man and nature, yet still in touch with the innocence of his youth. A fast-paced read for adventure fans, this will also be useful for social studies classes studying the westward movement. (Reviewed July 1995)0385321163Kay Weisman

Publisher's Weekly Review

The hero of this stallion-swift adventure tale, the followup to Mr. Tucket, could be the adolescent prefiguration of the archetypal western good guy-Gary Cooper or Clint Eastwood with a voice that's just begun to crack. Francis Tucket is 14 or 15-he's no longer sure of how much time has passed since a Pawnee raid on an Oregon-bound wagon train separated him from his family-but he can take care of himself. Hooking up with another wagon party, he volunteers to ``ride wide'' and hunt; he shoots a buffalo, causes a stampede, shoots again, gets robbed of all his possessions and then bests the thieves, all in the first few chapters. A cool-headed survivor in the mold of Hatchet's protagonist, Francis also cares about doing what's right, and so, when he meets two abandoned children, he assumes responsibility for them at some personal cost. Paulsen stumbles only once, in characterizing one of the children as a garrulous girl who has ``a place in me full of words and when I open the door to that place they just start coming...'' Elsewhere, he weaves in a wealth of information about pioneer travel, adding historical value to this heartstopping good read. Ages 10-up. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-8‘Gary Paulsen, well known for his realistic tales of survival and historical fiction, combines both in this compelling sequel (Delacorte, 1995) to Mr. Tucket (Delacorte, 1994). Fourteen-year-old Francis Tucket became separated from his wagon train in 1848 and, having spent a year with Pawnees and a surly mountain man, decides to continue the journey with hopes of reuniting with his family in Oregon. Along the way, he encounters much adversity‘ a terrifying buffalo stampede, a mugging by two ruthless men who rob him, and hunger. The most unsettling moment of all occurs when he stumbles upon two abandoned children who were ruthlessly driven from a wagon train when their father contracted cholera. Although rather brief, Paulsen's masterful storytelling brings the real Oregon Trail vividly to life with his accurate depiction which does not romanticize the harshness of the trail. Never overacting, reader John Randolph Jones offers an intriguing range of character voices. The brevity of this well-written and superbly performed story makes it an excellent choice for groups of listeners and will be useful for reluctant readers, history and literature classes, or anyone who enjoys a good story.-Susan McCaffrey, Sturgis Public Schools, MI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.