Eye on the Iditarod
Aisling's Quest

Aisling Lara Shepherd with Hope Irvin Marston
Illustrator: Bob Renaud

ISBN: 978-0-89317-071-4
Order Number: WW-0714
Price: $8.95

I was born to race.
Born to drive a team of sled dogs.
Born to follow my dream of running the Iditarod.

This is the real-life story of a young girl with a big dream. From the time she was three years old, Aisling (pronounced "Ashley") Lara Shepherd loved watching sled dog racing on television. Inspired by the drive and determination of the dogs and the people who race them, Aisling set out on a personal quest to one day run her own dogs in the famous Iditarod race in Alaska. Follow eleven-year-old Aisling as she conquers obstacles, deals with heartbreak and loss, and achieves great victories--all while keeping her Eye on the Iditarod.

Author Hope Irvin Marston worked with Aisling to complete this inspirational story of courage and resolve. This book also offers an informative and engaging look into the world of sled dog racing and the joys and challenges of caring for and training sled dogs.

112 pages, 6" x 9", 2011, paperbound

Provided on the official Iditarod educational resources page, Eye on the Iditarod lesson plans are now available, click here for more information!

Bring Eye on the Iditarod
into the Classroom!

About the Author:
Hope Irvin Marston is a native of central Pennsylvania and an honors graduate of Milligan College (TN). Hope and her husband, Arthur, have been married fifty years. Before moving to Black River, NY, they lived in Canton, Maine, and Hope taught in Buckfield, not far from Aisling's home. The Marstons have a Bernese Mountain dog named Heidi. Hope is the author of Against the Tide: The Valor of Margaret Wilson and the popular My Little Book Series from Windward Publishing.


To learn more about Hope, please visit www.hopeirvinmarston.com.


About the Illustrator:

Illustrator Bob Renaud was born May 1965, Syracuse, New York. He is one of six children. Encouraged at a young age by his parents to draw, Bob knew by sixth grade he wanted to be an artist. He is grateful to his instructors in high school for developing his artistic skills and for nurturing his interest in the illustrators of the "Golden Age". At Alfred University (New York), Bob played football while he majored in art education. He earned both bachelor's (1987) and master's (1988) degrees. Since the fall of 1988, he has been teaching and coaching at Carthage High School in upstate New York. He is married to his best friend and wife, Mary Beth, and they have two children, Joshua and Amelia.

What Others Are Saying:

The best mushers are born 'doggy'. From birth they are drawn towards canine companions and eat, sleep and dream dogs. The best mushers also seem to overcome significant adversity in their lives. Aisling has both qualities and seems destined to become a champion.
Dave Steele, Executive Director, International Sled Dog Racing Association


I think this is a great story; it has a lot to say about what a person can do with determination and drive. Aisling's Quest or Aisling's quest or Eye on the Iditarod also explores the relationship between musher and dogs and gives a lot of accurate detail about the care and training of the dogs. It's a long way from Maine to Nome, but I think one day Aisling will make it to the Iditarod. You'll have to write a sequel! Good job, Aisling, your Mom, too!
Libby Riddles, 1st Woman Champion of the Iditarod & Author


The messages in this book are extremely well demonstrated. It shows commitment, goal-setting, family values, sportsmanship, humane treatment of animals, learning to trust in someone other than yourself, overcoming fear, endurance, pride in achieving a goal, and we learn some interesting and relevant historical facts about dog mushing. This story has broad appeal…it has the magic of three elements - female, animal, and adventure.
Pam Flowers, World Class Adventurer, Arctic Explorer, Author & Public Speaker


Across the world, dreams such as Aisling's are taking shape. Setting goals, working hard, and meeting challenges leads to an interesting life!
Diane Johnson, Iditarod Education Department


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