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RIDING THE WAVES by Theresa Tomlinson

RIDING THE WAVES

By Theresa Tomlinson

Age Range: 11 - 14

Pub Date: April 30th, 1993
ISBN: 0-02-789207-7
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan

 The author of the well-received Summer Witches (1991) offers another complex, satisfying intergenerational relationship. Forced by school assignments to interview frail ``Auntie'' Florrie, Matt finds in the old woman not only a source of colorful town history but also a sturdy friend. Discovering that he's been enviously watching the local surfers, she takes him to the beach, introduces him, and cheers him on as he stubbornly tries to learn the sport; moreover, she helps him with his feelings about being adopted by sharing memories of her lover, killed at Dunkirk, and the child she bore and gave away. In return, Matt helps Auntie Florrie overcome her fear of leaving her house, and later sneaks into the hospital to visit her. When he sees that she's letting herself go, he administers an effective tonic by furiously chewing her out for ignoring her own self-reliant philosophy. Tomlinson gives Matt stable, sensitive parents and a sense of self-worth that's echoed and strengthened by his spirited older neighbor. A rich story, embellished with strong sentiment, genuine-sounding voices, and the pleasure of personal goals reached. (Fiction. 11-14)