Jim Lynch’s THE HIGHEST TIDE

This is one of those books that everyone was raving about when it first came out but for some reason I can’t remember (much to my Allen & Unwin rep’s annoyance) I didn’t read it. I actually discovered Jim Lynch through his second book BORDER SONGS, a very clever and funny look at border relations between the US and Canada, post 9/11, through the eyes of a small town situated right on the border. It is about a community and its seemingly inconsequential internal disputes, friendships and shared histories set against the backdrop of ever changing global events and politics. His new novel, TRUTH LIKE THE SUN, is also brilliant. [Which you can read about here] So to get me in the ‘Jim Lynch’ zone when his new book hits the shelves I finally picked up THE HIGHEST TIDE. And it lived up to, if not surpassed, all expectations.

It is a part coming-of-age novel, part parable not only about the ocean and the environment but life in general. Miles O’Malley is almost 14 but looks 10 because of his short stature. He is obsessed with the tidal mud flats behind his house and the life that teems just below its surface. However a series of remarkable discoveries sets in motion a chain of events that will have a profound impact on Miles and the people he cares about.

THE HIGHEST TIDE ebbs and flows with life, friendship, love and loss. Miles is one of those rare book characters who you will never forget. His wide-eyed passion, knowledge and fascination with marine life are infectious and his big heart and selfless attitude and actions only endear him to you more. This is a book to make you smile, shed a tear and want to share with as many people as possible.


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