Sunday, June 02, 2019

The Line Tender

Allen, Kate. The Line Tender
April 16th 2019 by Dutton
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Lucy lives in Rockport, and her father is a police officer there. They are still grieving the loss of her mother, a  marine biologist with a passion for sharks, five years ago. Their close knit community has helped, but when a tragedy occurs, this foundation is shaken. Lucy tries to deal with this new wave of grief by trying to solve a problem with the sharks that her mother was working on at the time of her death. This leads her to consult people who knew her mother and spend lots of time with her mother's notes and in watching and observing sharks. She does learn some more about her mother, helps her father a bit, and establishes more connections with people who can help her deal with life.
Strengths: There are very nice illustrations of sharks throughout the book, and a lot of information about types, habits, etc. It's good to see a mother portrayed as a top person in her field. The quest portion of this is well constructed, with Lucy trying to follow different leads about her mother's life.
Weaknesses: This is very long (384 pages), and has a lot of unneeded details, as well as odd turns of phrase. This read like a first middle grade novel of someone who writes for adults. The overwhelming sadness and grief in the story slowed down the plot. This would have been a little happier and more interesting if the tragedy hadn't occurred and Lucy just suddenly got interested in reconnecting with her mother.
What I really think: Will pass on purchase because I just can't think of any students to whom I would hand this if I had a copy in the library.
Ms. Yingling

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