Review Of The Book Where The Red Fern Grows By Wilson Rawls

Wilson Rawls wrote the 1961 children’s novel Where the Red Fern Grew, an autobiographical fictional story. The story follows a boy, his two Redbone Coonhounds that he trains and saves for. The book is set in rural Oklahoma during the 1920s. Our main character was born there. Billy Colman is the main character, along with his dogs Old Dan & Little Ann. Billy Colman, his faithful hounds, and themselves are in many situations that will test them.

Billy Colman will be our main protagonist. Billy has a lot in common with Wilson Rawls. When we first see him, he’s an adult returning home after work. He gets caught up in a dogfight. He stops the fight and gives aid to the victim. Redbone coonhound was the dog. He then releases the dog to continue his journey back home after he has fed and bathed it. Billy then tells us his story, including how he was a puppy lover. He lived with his family on a farm, along with his parents, three sisters, and his mother. Billy’s parents were very poor. He wanted two hunting dogs. His father replied that two hunting dogs would cost around $75. Billy comes across an old fishing camp and finds a magazine that advertises redbones at $25 each. He saves this money for two years to purchase two redbones. He names the dogs Old Dan and Little Ann once he has them.

Billy’s grandpa buys him the dogs, saying they will arrive in Kentucky within a week. Billy is impatient and wants to have them sooner than a week. He goes to town to buy them. In town, Billy buys overalls for both his father and mother. He also purchases some fabric for the sisters. He also meets many children in town who are critical of his appearance and use mean words because he has no education and lives clearly on a rural farm. He then gets into an altercation with some of the kids who teased his dogs. The first coon that he caught was another memorable moment. He told them that he was going to do everything if his dogs chased the coon into a single tree. Old Dave, Little Ann and a coon chased into a giant sycamore. Billy decided that he would cut down the sycamore tree and then get the old coon to give his dogs. He worked hard, but eventually he succeeded.

Billy’s grandpa has an incredible imagination that gets him into all sorts of adventures. He would always brag about Billy’s hounds and how great they were. Ruben, the nasty boy, who is always ready with insults to throw and fights, and Rainie, Ruben’s brother, were soon at each other. Rainie, who isn’t very bright, always makes bets. The Pritchards bet on grandpa once. They say there’s a ghost crow that no one has ever managed to capture. Billy’s claim that his hounds were the best in the world should have them able to do so. Billy refuses kill the coon after he has cornered it and is able to do so. He didn’t want it to be killed. Ruben decides that he will kill the animal himself. He takes Billy’s axe to go after the coon. Their hound is able to escape and go after them. Billy’s dog and the other dog fight bloodily, Billy has to separate his dogs and tie them. Ruben’s axe went through Rainie’s stomach after he tripped. Ruben does not survive. Billy’s Grandpa enters him in a contest to divert Billy. Billy is awarded two prizes. The silver cup is awarded to the dog with the best appearance. Little Ann was the winner. The gold cup was his and he also won $300 for the most pelts.

This story displays themes of maturity, self-confidence, and determination at multiple points. This book was very enjoyable. It was good because it really showed Billy’s loyalty to his dogs and their relationship. He gave them personalities that I will never forget. Do I recommend the book? Do I recommend this book? This book is something I’d recommend to my friends. This is a very interesting story about a dog-loving boy and the nature.


  • stanleybyrne

    Stanley Byrne is a 26-year-old education blogger and teacher. He has degrees in education and political science from the University of Notre Dame and has worked in various teaching and research positions since he graduated in 2014. He is the author of a number of educational blog posts and has written for Huffington Post, The Guardian, and Salon.