A young adult novel coming from Fitzroy Books, Summer 2018

By Alice Kaltman

Wavehouse is the story of sixteen year-old Anna Dugan, a surfer who feels most at home when taking off on a ten-foot wave or paddling through a dicey churn-fest of white water. Anna loves to surf, but surf culture bores her big time. While other surfers follow trends and speak the lingo, Anna dreams of houses, not waves. She harbors a secret desire to be an architect or an artist, not the most practical dream for the daughter of a single mom living in a beach town where most kids her age are so surf-centric they think ‘Current Events’ have something to do with ocean tides.

When a professional surf scout comes to town to gage her talent, Anna freaks out and refuses to let him watch her. The idea of professional surfing causes her major anxiety and she hasn’t a clue why her reaction is so extreme. On the other hand Anna’s mother Sara, an avid surfer herself,

is totally psyched by the idea of Anna going pro. But Sara is a perpetual thorn in Anna’s side. She’s a former party girl, and a constant flirt while Anna is a bookish loner who has never been on a date.

To protect herself from the pressure and the panic, Anna decides to only surf at a private break called Secretspot for the rest of the summer. But Secretspot becomes treacherous in ways Anna never imagined, and the danger has nothing to do with waves. When a stranger named Crazy paddles his way over from a distant break and befriends Anna, a series of events are set in motion that will change both their lives forever, events that raise difficult questions about honesty, betrayal and family ties.

And in the end, is it worth it? Dive in to Wavehouse (life-preserver recommended and the decision is yours).