Where the Red Fern Grows is heavily based on author Wilson Rawls's own life growing up in Oklahoma. While the book was first marketed to adults, its sales took off as a young adult book about a young boy and his two hounds. The book was adapted for a film both in 1974 and in 2003 and is now often required reading in American schools.
Told as a flashback, the novel takes place largely in the Ozark Mountains during the 1930s. Billy Colman raises two redbone coon hounds and trains them to hunt. While the portrayal of women is rather dated, most themes of Where the Red Fern Grows are still relevant to children today. It's a story of determination, perseverance, and love.