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Date Posted: 16:07:19 11/10/06 Fri
Author: Syl
Subject: The Highest Tide

This was sent in by Peggy B. Thanks for another good one, Peggy!




TITLE: The Highest Tide

AUTHOR: Jim Lynch

GENRE: Popular Fiction


This debut novel by Journalist Jim Lynch has received high acclaim far and wide -see the web site at The Highest Tide The setting and plotline made this a must read for me this summer.

The protagonist, Miles O’Malley, is a 13 year-old boy living in a small community on south Puget Sound (Washington State, USA). Miles is an avid fan of Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring and other works, and a skilled young naturalist in his own right.

Miles spends much of his free time exploring the tidal flats of Skookumchuk Bay, collecting clams and other marine life to sell to restaurants and aquaria. On one such foraging expedition, Miles finds a giant squid–unheard of in the relatively shallow waters of Puget Sound. The squid is only the beginning of Miles’ surprising finds that summer.

We get to know Miles through his relationships with the people in his life; his best friend, elderly Florence Dalessandro, his hormone-driven buddy Kenny Phelps, neighbor Judge Stegner and his daughter Angie. And, of course, his parents.

The Highest Tide has been described as a "coming-of-age" story. And that, perhaps, is the best description. I found the story and characters interesting. As a biologist, I appreciated much of the plotline. I did, however, have trouble trying to figure out who Lynch’s audience is for this book. I found the adolescent conversations between Miles and Phelps somewhat annoying, yet the contrast between the two 13 year-olds was useful in establishing Miles’ uniqueness and endearing him to the reader.

I am interested in reading the reaction of others to this book.

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Replies:

[> Peggy! I missed this one while I was away. I can see how it interested you, sort of your field, eh?! What a great review. Thanks! -- becca beccabee, 20:13:03 11/25/06 Sat

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[> Upon your recommendation, I read this book recently. I loved all the information on marine life, tide pool creatures and exotic saltwater fish. Beyond piquing my scientific interest though, the story was poignant and often funny. This young boy has a very good sense of humour! I thoroughly enjoyed the read! -- Lady Tait, 10:41:54 01/01/07 Mon

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