This is a short book, 96 pages, from 1968, with many beautiful illustrations by the legendary Lynd Ward. Only the cover is full color, the interior paintings are in black and blue only:
Despite the shortness, it’s a story full of great characters and thrilling adventure. Fifteen-year-old Aslak of the Lapp people in northern Scandinavia has become the head of his household after his father’s death, which means he is also in charge of the family’s large herd of reindeer, which they follow in nomadic fashion through the seasons from summer to winter grounds. Aslak’s grandfather, Great Jouni, was a lucky man with a large herd and a treasure in gold nuggets, but his son, Aslak’s father, seemed cursed with bad luck, and now Aslak is having the same trouble. Some of his herd has been stolen, and his grandmother is very ill. When they return to their winter town, Aslak finds his Uncle Piera is scheming to take control of the herd and the family. To stop him, Aslak must leave early for a new summer camp where he believes he will find proof that the herd belongs to him. Piera follows, and soon the two are locked in a battle of strength and wills, while Piera continues to scheme and lie to get his way.
Well worth searching out, this is a fine read. Recommended.