Published in 1997 by McRoy & Blackburn Publishers.ISBN 0-9632596-6-0 (paperback), List price: $16.95, and ISBN 0-9632596-7-9 (clothbound), list price: $26.95, 259 pages.
"[H]is sense of humor and detail are engaging....By the end of Battling Against Success, I was won over by this mature young narrator." --Ellen Moore, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
"In this often humorous, but mostly matter-of-fact autobiographical novel, Neil Davis tells the compelling story of growing up on a homestead near Fairbanks in the 1940s.
"It's hard to tell who's real and who's imaginary in this tale, for Davis does an outstanding job of bringing all the characters to life. Certainly Davis' parents, Bon and Bernice, and his brother, Lewie, are real. But then there are the folks like Henry Grutberger, the religious fanatic who devised the perfect plow for Alaska's scrubby ground; Tom Wade, the eccentric and well-read woodcutter; and Nellie Kelley, the brawny bar owner who spices up the story.
"Davis also successfully draws upon a lifetime of experience. His descriptions of the changing seasons and landscape are as accurate as they are interesting: 'Fireweed's purplish blooms are shrinking up into wispy shreds of old woman's hair.'
"Unlike the battles against success encountered by Davis' father as he tried to make a life in this harsh land, Neil Davis has found success with this book." --Melissa DeVaughn, ALASKA magazine