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Children's LiteratureThe title alone hints that the reader will be pulled into an adventure dealing with the world of surfing. The opening paragraph confirms this. "They say the big ones come from underneath, not behind you. As Jake Evans lay on his surfboard, trailing gloved fingers in the sparkling water, he thought he felt the pulse of the ocean beneath him quicken." Jake and Peter have a scuba-diving accident that leaves them, along with a girl, stranded on an island. The three of them must use their surfing talents, their determination, and their instincts to find a way home. Unfortunately, this becomes very difficult when they encounter the storm of the century. The reader will learn surfing vocabulary. "Really worked" means a heavy, painful wipeout. "Stall for the barrel" means when a hollow wave breaks right over a surfer and the surfer slows down to keep himself inside it. This is a super action-packed book. Once started it will be very difficult to put down. I especially like the way the author develops the characters. They are very believable and students will be able to identify with them and their feelings. Withers draws the reader into the story and provides a book that will interest girls and boys, avid as well as reluctant readers, and middle to young adult-age children. This would make a great gift. It would be perfect in a classroom or personal library. It is part of the "Take It to Extreme" series." 2005, Walrus Books, Ages 10 up.
—Kathie M. Josephs