What are Chapters 5 and 6 about in Hatchet?

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Noelle Thompson | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

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Chapter 5

Brian wakes up and is surprised by his unquenchable hunger and thirst.  He drinks water from the lake and realizes that he is surrounded by vast wilderness, but hopes that he will be rescued on that very day.  Brian remembers his English teacher who taught lessons about the power of positive thinking, and takes that advice to the fullest.  Brian notices the difference between the silence of the wilderness and the loud sounds of the city.  Suddenly, Brian remembers knocking the wheel when reaching for the headset, possibly making the plane veer off course which would deter rescue efforts.  Brian desperately tries to calm himself when he suspects panic setting in; therefore, he tries to find some food and some shelter.

Chapter 6

Brian thinks of a pleasant memory:  playing in the park with Terry.  Brian misses his friend and wishes Terry were in the wilderness, too.  Brian uses their past adventures to inspire him to find an ideal spot for a shelter.  He finds a perfect place and gathers the necessary materials, but he recognizes the seriousness of his situation.  Brian knows he needs to find food, something very easy to do in the city.  Brian's thoughts turn again to his parents' divorce and he decides to tell his dad "The Secret" once he gets home, as he eats some bitter red berries to ease his hunger.  Brian focuses his thoughts on building a fire without matches and improving his shelter with sticks.  Brian finally falls asleep amid nausea from the bitter berries.

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