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In the book Hatchet, the thirteen-year-old protagonist, Brian Robeson, is in some serious trouble when the pilot of the small plane he is on has a heart attack and dies. Brian somehow manages to land the plane into a lake and survive with only some scratches and bruises. But now what? How will this boy from New York City survive alone in the Canadian wilderness? Luckily he has a hatchet that his mother gave him, and this tool will be key to his survival.

Brian recognizes that the first thing he needs to survive is food and shelter. The first food he locates consists of some bright red berries, which he eats despite their bitter taste. Later in the book, a raspberry patch helps alleviate some hunger but puts him face to face with a bear. The next nourishment he finds is turtle eggs, which he eats raw. Once Brian learns how to build a tool to catch fish, he has a feast. His final success is catching a foolbird, which he kills with a spear. Brian also finds some freeze-dried food in the plane before he is rescued. Food is not that plentiful for Brian, but using his wits, patience, and hatchet, he learns how to survive long enough to stay alive.

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