The Twenty-Ninth Day - Alex Messenger

The Twenty-Ninth Day

By Alex Messenger

  • Release Date: 2019-11-12
  • Genre: Biographies & Memoirs
Score: 4.5
From 259 Ratings


A six-hundred-mile canoe trip in the Canadian wilderness is a seventeen-year-old’s dream adventure, but after he is mauled by a grizzly bear, it’s all about staying alive.
This true-life wilderness survival epic recounts seventeen-year-old Alex Messenger’s near-lethal encounter with a grizzly bear during a canoe trip in the Canadian tundra. The story follows Alex and his five companions as they paddle north through harrowing rapids and stunning terrain. Twenty-nine days into the trip, while out hiking alone, Alex is attacked by a barren-ground grizzly. Left for dead, he wakes to find that his summer adventure has become a struggle to stay alive. Over the next hours and days, Alex and his companions tend his wounds and use their resilience, ingenuity, and dogged perseverance to reach help at a remote village a thousand miles north of the US-Canadian border.
The Twenty-Ninth Day is a coming-of-age story like no other, filled with inspiring subarctic landscapes, thrilling riverine paddling, and a trial by fire of the human spirit.


  • Very dissatisfying

    By Bobcat602
    The book cover was very misleading. I was expecting more of a gruesome attack & was hoping to feel inspired by someone overcoming extreme adversity. Definitely didn’t feel that reading this book. The bear attack itself was a very small part of the book & wasn’t as severe as one would expect. Most of the book is about a boring canoeing trip.
  • The Twenty-Ninth Day

    By aambree
    Took way too much time to get to the event. I enjoy back story but I don’t need chapter after chapter describing the canoeing and camping and fishing. And while any bear attack has to be terrifying, this appears to be trying to dramatize this more than it needed to be. It tries to hard to convince us how awful it was when he actually came out of it pretty well.
  • Incredible and human

    By Jay Nance
    Fantastic story! Loved reading every second. I love the emotional honesty throughout the story. Worth a read for anyone!
  • The twenty-ninth day

    By nickname5452316
    Excellent rendering of an incredible Northern Canadian canoeing adventure undertaken by five 17 year olds and one somewhat older “guide.” Rather than tedious the telling is fascinating. The author’s encounter with a grizzly bear and how his injuries were handled thereafter is very well described and amazingly intimate. I would have preferred more detail of the medical resolution of the injury. But this is an enlightening read and I especially encourage teens and young adults to read it.
  • H

    By Loved the book!!
  • Compelling wilderness story.

    By Donson1
    An adventure trip suddenly rent by the attack of a massive bear. Many lengthy detailed specifics about cold northern wilderness canoeing and camping - too many for my taste - but a gripping, candid account of the author’s battle to survive an extreme event and it’s aftermath. Very worth reading.