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A few tricky twists in Turnabout would have been welcome. As it is, the most unusual aspect concerns a minor issue. 16 year old Ellen Bennett's father was recently killed in an accident, but as a parent, and a dead one at that, Ellen continually looks to his judgments as the final rule for her conduct. Her gradual realization that her father was overly ambitious and sometimes irresponsible does not mar her love for him and is tastefully handled as a part of her maturation. As for the rest of the book, it's the same old knots squarely tied together. She's finally gotten into the crowd, but it's a tenuous arrangement dependent on whether she can keep the boy interested. Of course all the members of this crowd are attractive, have wealth, social position, and a lot of other similarly damning qualities. If Ellen would only pay attention to her own simple thoughts she could tell from the first few pages that her attitude toward the boy and his crowd is quite superficial, but it takes time, a hurricane, her mother's heart attack, an introduction to the family's financial problems, and a little jealousy before Ellen wises up. At one point as she accepts her responsibilities, Ellen, who is going to be a high school senior, tells her mother that she is no longer a child but a grown woman. Her mother accepts this along with Ellen's implied ""adult"" values: that life on a small unfashionable island is fuller than in the city, that she reciprocates the love of one of the island boys, and that she is ready to decide on a college course strictly geared to a career. This is more backslide than turnabout.

Pub Date: April 2nd, 1965
Publisher: Doubleday