The Highest Tide

The Highest Tide

A Novel

eBook - 2010
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A mesmerizing, allegorical, and beautifully wrought first novel about one boy's fascination with the sea during the summer that will change his life. One moonlit night, thirteen-year-old Miles O'Malley slips out of his house, packs up his kayak and goes exploring on the flats of Puget Sound. But what begins as an ordinary hunt for starfish, snails, and clams is soon transformed by an astonishing sight: a beached giant squid. As the first person to ever see a giant squid alive, the speed-reading Rachel Carson-obsessed insomniac instantly becomes a local curiosity. When he later finds a rare deepwater fish in the tidal waters by his home, and saves a dog from drowning, he is hailed as a prophet. The media hovers and everyone wants to hear what Miles has to say. But Miles is really just a teenager on the verge of growing up, infatuated with the girl next door, worried that his bickering parents will divorce, and fearful that everything, even the bay he loves, is shifting away from him. While the sea continues to offer up discoveries from its mysterious depths, Miles struggles to deal with the difficulties that attend the equally mysterious process of growing up. In this mesmerizing, beautifully wrought first novel, we witness the dramatic sea change for both Miles and the coastline that he adores over the course of a summer - one that will culminate with the highest tide in fifty years.
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury USA : Distributed to the trade by Holtzbrinck Publishers, 2010
ISBN: 9781596918481
Branch Call Number: Overdrive eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource (228 p.)


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Nov 20, 2017


Jun 01, 2016

The highest tide was... interesting. It tells the tale of Miles O'Malley, a 13 year old who lives at the shores of Skookumchuck bay, near Olympia Washington. He loves sea life, science, and Angie, a twentysomething girl who used to babysit Miles. Al of the characters in this book are stereotypes. There is the Nerd, the Psychic Old Lady, the John Green Girl, her Boyfriend, the Horny Tough Guy Who Smokes and Swears, the Negligent Parents with Lots of Problems, the Mad Scientist, and a Cult. I couldn't stand it for the longest time, although I've come to realize that that's just a part of a larger metaphor. Not the best story I've read, but it's not as bad as I thought it would be.

Nov 20, 2013

I loved this book. One of those savory stories with excellent writing and a gorgeous setting. It's a book that invites you to share it's curiosity about the natural world. I learned some things about the ocean and how easy it is to miss things when you're not looking.

Jan 20, 2013

This book has a juvenile main character that even Rachel Carson would love. Describes the west coast life and characters beautifully. Have read it a number of times and enjoy it every time.

Jul 27, 2012

The story of a 13 year old boy on Puget Sound. It is inspiring about marine life and an all round nice story.

Jul 23, 2012

Loved the story, loved the characters, loved the setting, loved the writing style!

vickiboo Jan 22, 2011

Set in the author’s hometown of Olympia, Washington, this novel covers one summer in the life of Rachel Carson-obsessed insomniac thirteen-year-old Miles O'Malley. Miles’ consuming interest is the diverse and teaming sea life of Skookumchuck Bay. When he discovers, in quick succession, two rare and bizarre creatures – a giant squid and a ragfish - the media descends and Miles reluctantly becomes a local celebrity. Although Miles worries about his parents’ separation, his huge crush on his former babysitter and the increasing illness of an elderly friend, what dominates the story is the sea and its mysteries. A good read for both adults and teens.


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