Inuunira: My Story of Survival


by Brian Koonoo
illustrated by Ben Shannon

An inspiring survival story of strong will and hope. Brian Koonoo’s traditional knowledge, survival skills, and thoughts of reuniting with his family keep him alive to tell the tale.

“An unforgettable physical and emotional journey.” —★ Kirkus, STARRED review

In this harrowing survival story, Brian Koonoo takes off on a hunting trip in Canada’s Arctic. After his snowmobile breaks down, his GPS loses signal, and his camping fuel runs low, he is left alone to survive for seven days. Inuunira is an Inuktitut term that means “how I’m alive,” and this account shows exactly how Brian managed to stay alive. He experiences close encounters with planes, blizzards, and hunger, all while much of his gear is lost. Walking 60 kilometres in search of safety, he uses the knowledge his father and Elders taught him—modern and traditional means of navigation, finding water, making shelters, and keeping his spirits up—to continue on. With photos, illustrations, and diagrams throughout, readers are sure to be inspired by this story of strong will and hope.

Brian Koonoo was born and grew up in Pond Inlet. He is married to Samantha Koonoo, originally from Rankin Inlet. They have six daughters at home, Chantal, Janelle, Josephina, Shanelle, Alina and Alaira. Chantal and her partner Curtis have a son named Rogan, who is Brian and Samantha’s first grandson and first boy in the family. Brian currently works with Parks Canada as a resource management officer. Brian continues to hunt and provides country food for his family, relatives, and community.

Ben Shannon is a Canadian-born, award-winning illustrator, animator, and father of two. An alumni of Sheridan College’s Illustration program, Ben has worked for numerous high profile clients including National Geographic, Rolling Stone, The Globe and Mail, The Wall Street Journal, Nike, Universal Music, Marvel, and DC Comics. Winner of the ADCC interactive Design Illustration award in 2008, and the Applied Arts award of excellence in the field of illustration in 1998, his work was also nominated for a Canadian Screen Award in 2014. Ben is currently employed by the Canadian Broadcast Corporation by day and is a contributing artist to the First Nations comic anthology Moonshot by night.

Ages 12 and up
Hardcover | 38 pages | Inhabit Media | 2022

In stock (can be backordered)

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