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Riptide's synopsis doesn't promise that it will be a light read, so I don't understand why readers are complaining on how misleading the book was. Just because the book is set in the summer, and the beach, doesn't mean it will be light. I loved every single page of Riptide. It is told from alternating POVs, Grace, our main protagonist, and Ford, her best friend. Both Grace and Ford are surfers however that is when their similarities end. While Ford's family consists of a loving and supporting father and mother, Grace's family is the opposite. Her mom is always looking disapprovingly at Grace, whether it be her worn in jeans or flared shorts or her spending her summer at the beach surfing. However Grace's mother's way of showing her disapproval is through looks or a lecture, which is the opposite of Grace's dad, who tends to take matters into his own hand, literally. Grace has been the recipient of many slaps, and the host of many bruises by her loving father. He is a top notch lawyer but anything and everything sets him off, usually when Grace is present.
I hated Grace's dad, Mr.Parker, with all my heart. Hated how he would hit her one day, then take her shopping the next day and expect her to forget everything that happened the day before. I hated his expectation of Grace going to an Ivy League school and not even asking her what she wants. I hate how he tries to find anything to ram at Grace, whether her not doing her chores when it is only 7 in the morning, or her showing any signs of disagreement. He turned Grace's life into a nightmare. Of course I can't forget the mom, who just stands idly, with her eyes and ears closed to anything that happens in her house. I honestly can't imagine what Grace went through, and how she kept everything to herself, not even confiding in Ford.
Speaking of Ford, I loved him so much. He was so supportive, so ambitious, and the bestest friend. Of course he would rather be more than that with Grace. He lands an internship at Mr.Parker's law firm. You see the charmer that is Mr.Parker at his job and I seriously resented him. However Ford's POV mostly centers around his dream of becoming an immigrant lawyer as well as his feelings towards Grace and her hot/cold acts towards him. I loved Ford sticking around her even though she was stringing him along. I couldn't blame him since he didn't know what was going on with Grace, even when he tried to find out. He also helps Grace practice for an upcoming competition that might attract the scouts at the university she wants to attend. Of course this is all the opposite of what her parents want so you can imagine how everything went down. Scheibe was able to draw out so many emotions from me. There are many Grace's in this world, many without a supporting friend and a place to welcome them if they ever decide that enough is enough. I just felt helpless and I teared up on many occasions. I loved all the surfer lingo in the book and how Scheibe didn't lose sight of all three major plot lines, the sport itself, the romance, and the main issue. So much happens in the 288 pages of this book, I wished the book was even longer. Ford and Grace had such amazing voices. I loved both of their POVs.
Fans of realistic fiction will definitely love this book, but I would still recommend it to contemporary readers. This book is not your typical beach contemporary, it has depth and by the end of the book you just don't want to let these characters go. I will definitely keep an eye out for Lindsey Scheibe and any upcoming books by her.