Sam stared at the picture of the boy about to be tipped off the edge of the world: the crushing weight of water about to pummel him. Sam knew that moment exactly, the disbelief that what was about to happen could even be possible. The intake of breath before the flood.
Sam has always had things going on in his head that no one else understands, even his mum. And now she's dead, it's worse than ever.
With nothing but his skateboard and a few belongings in a garbage bag, Sam goes to live with the strangers his mum cut ties with seven years ago: Aunty Lorraine and his cousins Shane and Minty.
Despite the suspicion and hostility emanating from their fibro shack, Sam reverts to his childhood habit of following Minty around and is soon surfing with Minty to cut through the static fuzz in his head. But as the days slowly meld into one another, and ghosts from the past reappear, Sam has to make the ultimate decision… will he sink or will he swim.
Multi-award winning Australian author Claire Zorn just keeps on producing great books. This time we follow the journey of seventeen-year-old Sam after the sudden death of his Mum, in his arms, of a brain aneurysm on New Year’s Eve.
Sam is left with no one and so he rings his Aunty Lorraine who he hasn’t seen since she moved north seven years ago. She reluctantly collects him and brings him to her small coastal house where he reunites with his cousins Minty and Shane. Shane hates him, but Minty was always his mate when they were young and their friendship reignites.
This story is about coming to terms with sudden loss, grieving, growing up, falling in love and making something from the hand you are dealt.
It is beautifully written, at times gritty and at times soft, but always believable and engrossing.
This is a great read that I highly recommend for teenagers, probably best suited to those fourteen or older.
Reviewed by Rob