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The Whitstable High Tide Swimming Club Paperback – 8 Feb 2018
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THE WHITSTABLE HIGH TIDE SWIMMING CLUB is a heartwarming novel about second chances. For readers of Jill Mansell, Cathy Bramley, Lucy Diamond and Carole Matthews
About the Author
Katie May is better known as Betty Herbert, author of the award-winning blog and memoir, THE 52 SEDUCTIONS (Headline UK and 8 other languages). She has also published fiction in her own name: BURNING OUT (Snowbooks, 2009) and GHOSTS & THEIR USESS (Urban Fox, 2007). She has written for The Times, Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Glamour and Aeon, amongst others.
She began her literary career as a resident writer for Tate Britain' s education programme, and is currently Programme Director for Creative Writing at Canterbury Christ Church University. In her spare time, she cooks, mixes demon cocktails and walks a great deal. She lives in Whitstable with her husband and son.
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Ah this book was like a flash of bright sunlight and fresh air on a wintry day when I read it. Snow outside but I imagined it was Whitstable sand. Sleet on the window was sea fret…the location is a joy to behold! Sun, sea and and oysters! Not to mention cafes, pop up bars and a seaside atmosphere. Oh but those developers! aargh I was angry on behalf of the characters but it was a great story line to show the reality of beach towns up and down the country.
I think it’s great to have parts one and two together in a book now – allows you to dive in, swim and come up still wanting more.
As it so happens the characters you meet in this book are all just ordinary people, especially Deb and Maisie the main protagonists, who are the first two women we meet that happen to be there every day swimming when its high tide.
Whether they like it or not when they meet Anne, suddenly a club is being formed and soon there are a whole host of them that meet on a regular basis to swim and become friends. Maisie and Deb are in the prime of their lives, and you have a complete mix of people who enjoy swimming from the teenage, you busy mothers, to the elderly.
The book was originally published in three parts, and you can see that in the three parts the book is split into with each of part 1 and two ending on a mini cliffhanger to keep your reading. The first part focuses on the formation of the the club and largely works as a great introduction to all the characters, part two is about the beginnings of the fight to save the beach, and then part 3... well part 3 culminates all of this and much much more.
Even at Deb's age of a grandma in her sixties, i would almost describe this as a coming of age story for her, as she learns to stand on her own two feet after leaving her husband, and starting to figure out just who she is as an adult. There are some hilarious scenes early on with regards the temporary job she has taken on, and although at times I wasn't sure how much I liked Deb, but I could sympathise with her, and loved the development of her character.
I loved the ups and downs of this community and by the end I felt as though I was part of their club. Its a great story of the underdog, touches on assorted serious topics, but also some great comedy too. Just an all around enjoyable book.
Thanks to Trapeze and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
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