It was an important recollection for me as I came close to letting Eric Wilson off the hook for my lack of enthusiasm towards his YA novel The Inuk Mountie Adventure. I almost caught myself saying, "yes, but young teens would probably find this exciting," which would have sold them short.
When a southern author decides to write about the North, I think my gut instinct is to assume they'll get the facts wrong. I'm not sure why that is. More often than not, the authors have done their research. In this Wilson is no exception. According to the "About the Author" page at the back, he did actually travel to Gjoa Haven (then part of the Northwest Territories, now part of Nunavut) in order to research the setting. That part rings true.
Unfortunately it's the only part that rings true. The Inuk Mountie Adventure involves a prime minister who has somehow managed to convince Canadian voters that they should amalgamate the country with the United States. He has ulterior motives but has gone through great lengths to keep them hidden. Too bad for him, there's a damning micro-cassette in Gjoa Haven with more than enough evidence to not only bring the amalgamation to an end, but to put the prime minister behind bars. It's up to
But, I'll give some credit. Like Robert Munsch (of whose writing I also have some issues), it's admirable that Wilson has chosen to set his books in various locations across Canada. And, if kids are okay with over-the-top plots and hackneyed dialogue, they'll probably also learn from Wilson's in depth research.