Rudi Matt is obsessed with The Citadel. It’s the last great summit of the Alps that remains unconquered. Rudi’s father was sure it could be climbed – and he died trying to prove it.
Rudi is determined to prove his father right. And Rudi’s mother and uncle are just as determined that Rudi will not be a mountain guide, and instead work in the village at the local inn.
But Rudi cannot stay in the kitchen – even if he is washing dishes for Teo Zurbriggren, his father’s friend, fellow guide and sole survivor of the climb that killed his father and his father’s herr, or client.
Teo understands, and covers for Rudi’s impulsive dashes for the mountains. Rudi truly wants to obey his mother and uncle, and yet he cannot keep himself from climbing the mountain again and again.
Banner in the Sky by James Ramsey Ullman is Rudi’s coming of age on the side of a mountain – and his unusual triumph over his fears and passions, and his reconciliation with his mother and uncle.
Highly recommended for ages 10 and up.