Illustrations © Ben Bishop

Lost TrailNine Days Alone in the Wilderness

by Donn Fendler with Lynn Plourde Illustrated by Ben Bishop Down East Books, 2011

Whenever I look in the mirror, it’s obvious decades have passed. But at the same time, my ordeal seems so real, like yesterday. I scratch at the thought of the bugs’ relentless bloody gnawing. The bear’s steely stare still makes me flinch. And the ache, the awful ache of the fear and the loneliness are still hauntingly real.

did climb mile-high Mt. Katahdin with his family and friends. But in a sudden July sleet storm, Donn got lost on the mountain. He was lost for nine days alone in the dense Maine wilderness—facing bugs, bears, and despair. Something inside Donn wouldn’t let him give up. He prayed, he fought, and he endured to become one of New England’s greatest survival stories. Originally told in the classic book Lost Trail with new details. Plus he tells it in a fresh, new format—a graphic novel that makes readers feel they are right beside him, holding their breaths and rooting for the scrawny New York Boy Scout to somehow prevail against the mighty mountain and unforgiving wilderness. And prevail, Donn Fendler did!


2013 Maine Student Book Award Winner

Maine's Harriet P. Henry Center for the Book selection for National Book Festival, 2012

2012 Maine Literary Award Winner-Young Adult

2011 ForeWord Book of the Year Awards Honorable Mention-Graphic Novels

Augusta Reads 2012 Book

2011 Lupine Honor Book from Maine Library Association
(in Juvenile/Young Adult Category)


Donn Fendler's story of survival is both terrifying and uplifting. It's wonderful to see it in a format that will introduce it to a whole new generation of readers. Here is a graphic novel about a real American superhero.
IFanBoy’s 2011: Must Have Graphic Novels

With the help of Plourde . . .Fendler’s unforgettable, “Lost on a Mountain in Maine” is now an attention-demanding high-end comic book. With vivid illustrations by Ben Bishop, this classic tale of survival is as intense and thought-provoking as the original story from 1939 . . . Riveting details and energetic drawings bring the heart of the story to the forefront, placing readers in the wilderness with Fendler . . . New Maine Times

It's the kind of story that grips readers right up until the end . . .The graphic novel format is ideal for conveying the emotions and adventure of Donn's story. Bishop's black and white illustrations bring the story to life . . . The Nonfiction Detectives