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The Odd Sea

Reiken, Frederick

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ISBN 10: 0385333382 / ISBN 13: 9780385333382
Verlag: Delta, 1999
Gebraucht Zustand: Very Good Softcover
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0385333382 Very good. Clean text. Email for further information. Quality, Value, Experience. Media Shipped in New Boxes. Buchnummer des Verkäufers BINGX86412721

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Bibliografische Details

Titel: The Odd Sea

Verlag: Delta

Erscheinungsdatum: 1999

Einband: Paperback

Zustand: Very Good

Über diesen Titel


A teenage boy is missing. His younger brother searches for him and in the process finds himself.


In The Odd Sea, Frederick Reiken provides readers with an unblinking glimpse into a world we would rather avoid. One day, 15-year-old Ethan Shumway puts on his "pond sneakers" and invites his younger brother, Philip, to join him for an exploration of the murky Baker's Bottom Pond. Philip is about to go along for the adventure, but at the last minute is reminded by his perpetually irritated older sister that he has a birdwatching class. Just as happy to go alone, Ethan steps out the door, walks down the driveway, and disappears.

Such is the stuff tabloids are made of. But Reiken's telling is uninflammatory, unsensationalized, and remarkably real. In fact, you may never hear another news story about a missing child without hearkening back to the Shumways' emotions and reactions. Reiken's gaze is so clear and his understanding so perceptive, it is often difficult to believe this is fiction; if it weren't for the strangely soothing, almost ethereal prose, we might be reading a piece of in-depth journalism.

"Almost two years after Ethan vanished," Reiken writes, "we found his shoe. More specifically, his left pond sneaker--a canvas Nike trainer with a large hole in the toe. Halley discovered it in mid-April, while she was raking out a long-neglected patch of ivy, under a lilac tree that stands close to the end of our gravel driveway. Holding the sneaker by its rubber toe, she carried it straight up to my bedroom, where she placed it on the floor. We knew we shouldn't really touch it, so we just watched the thing in silence. I leaned down close and looked inside, although not sure what I hoped to see. The inner sole was black but had white fungus growing out of it. I recall staring hard at this fungus, feeling as if I were gazing at some visible, living form of Ethan's absence."

This beautifully written novel is told through the eyes of Philip, painfully bent on finding clues that will reveal his brother is alive somewhere. His investigations include questioning Ethan's sheep-shearing girlfriend and provocative mentor to combing through his brother's diary. In the process, he chronicles how each member of his family copes with this inconceivable tragedy: his mother thrown into the darkest depths of depression; his father who takes on the precise, labor-intensive art of timber framing; and the sisters left behind--a self-proclaimed bitch, a lovely accessory to Philip's blind hopes, and the youngest girl, whose insight approaches clairvoyance. Ultimately, as Philip comes of age, he must come to terms with Ethan's absence and acknowledge that grief, too, can be a form of love. --Brangien Davis

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