Steve B. (Spring, TX)
Flat Water Tuesday produces a storm surge of excitement.
I really enjoyed this book. I was skeptical before starting my read since I know very little about crew and I was wondering how the subject could be exciting or produce an interesting novel. Boy, was my skepticism ill placed. I credit the author for creating a story that is interesting, exciting, suspenseful and most of all, entertaining. The characters are diverse but each has their good and bad qualities revealed to us and I was able to identify with them. The three main characters (Rob, Ruth Anderson and Connor) interact in ways that produce a story worth telling and certainly worth reading. Thanks Ron Irwin for authoring a great debut novel. I will anxiously await your next book.
Daniel A. (Naugatuck, CT)
Flat Water Tuesday
This is a great story, I liked it a lot. It's so suspenseful, that I at times tried to squeeze key words on the page with my mind to find out what happens next, to no avail. I even called the phone number on page 271 hoping that would help; it didn't but I got a surprise at who was on the other end.
It wasn't until I turned the page, that I found what was happening next, and I couldn't stop turning pages quick enough. It almost drove me to drink, but I refrained. I enjoyed the book more because it has a Connecticut connection, my home state.
Overall, this is a page-turner that I will not soon forget. I recommend this book to fans of suspense/thrillers.
Annie P. (Murrells Inlet, SC)
Flat Water Tuesday - A Hit!
This is one good book! I know zilch about crew, and until now, could have cared less. The characters and the story have given me a new sport to cheer for. The protagonist, Rob Carrey, is a successful failure, a guy who tries and tries, and with every turn hits a roadblock, but keeps on going. Maybe he didn't follow the path laid out for him, but the path he blazes is interesting and littered with full characters and events. I hope to see a lot more from Mr. Irwin!
Barbara K. (Brooklyn, NY)
Flat Water Tuesday is the story of 5 members of a high school rowing team & their coach who share experiences during their senior year at an exclusive school. It is told by Carrey, one of the team members, an 'outsider' to this world of privilege, recruited because of his rowing skills. Eventually they share a tragedy as often befalls teenagers who engage in reckless behavior.
Interspersed in the story are details of the hard work it takes to train & excel in a sport, in this case, rowing. Also interspersed throughout, an adult Carrey tells of his present life & we see it is not working. However, it is not clear as to how this relates to his earlier days. The transitions between these time periods were disjointed & made little sense to me.
I found this book to be just OK. Although it was well written, I couldn't get invested in these characters & so I wouldn't recommend it.
Elizabeth M. (Syracuse, NY)
Not enough unique features, but a solid example of its genre
I feel like I have read a hundred books similar to this. Do we really need another prep school book? There are some elements that make this book unique: the very detailed descriptions of the mechanics of training for and competing in crew; the career of the main character as an adult, which is a documentary filmmaker, adds some interesting elements; and the obstacle in the romantic relationship of the main character as an adult was one of the more gruesome elements I have read in a novel.
Aside from these unique features, however, I mostly found that the familiar tropes of prep school fiction were present. The poor kid who is really the smartest character in the book and is only able to come to the school because of some amazing talent he has. The wealthy student who can't survive under the weight of the pressure and expectation heaped upon him by his parents. The gruff teacher who rarely says it but cares fiercely for his students. The troubled female student who struggles with becoming a woman and leaving her childhood behind. I just felt like there wasn't enough new here for me.
It probably is important to note that I am not and have never been much of an athlete and so the long montages of training and competition for slots on the team and trying to win the big race just did not resonate for me. I think that for someone who had an experience where being on a sports team was an important part of their formative years this book may have more impact.
Malinda N. (Wheeling, WV)
Flat Water Tuesday Falls a Little Flat
I fully anticipated enjoying this book. I tend to enjoy coming of age novels and, having attended a prep school, enjoy reading novels with a similar setting. For the most part, I did enjoy the story. I liked the characters as they all seemed complex and damaged and I was fully expecting an ending that would tie them all together and answer some of the questions that were posed throughout the novel. Unfortunately the ending did not meet my expectations. I felt that the author created a complicated story and then left the reader hanging. It just didn't come together which is unfortunate because the story had a lot of potential. Also the crew information dragged at times although it was somewhat integral to the story. If one knows nothing about the sport the story probably won't interest them.
Eileen F. (Drexel Hill, PA)
Flat Water Tuesday is the compelling story of 5 teenage crew members and their coach at a prep school. It was filled with vivid descriptions of the life and surroundings of the crew team. I would recommend this for it's moving story and the gorgeous depictions of the life of a crew team.