Twelve-year-old Harriet Palmer's father left several months ago to join the 1862 Cariboo Gold Rush, leaving his family behind at a fort halfway along the way. Now Harriet's mother has died after a difficult childbirth, along with the new baby, and Harriet has no way to support her ten-year-old brother William and four-year-old sister Luella. The three siblings are taken in by the Owens, a childless couple who live at the fort, but then Harriet learns that when they return to Toronto next year, the Owens plan to take William and Luella with them and leave Harriet behind as a servant to another family. Harriet is determined not to allow what is left of her family to be torn apart. Disguising herself as a boy, she joins a party of miners headed for the gold fields, hoping and praying that she will find her father there. Along the difficult journey, Harriet faces many dangers and hardships, but also makes new friends and finds adventure. She doesn't know what will await her at the end of the journey and wonders if she will ever find her father.
This report prepared by Rebecca Herman