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Bunting, Eve.
BLACKWATER
New York : Joanna Cotler Books, 1999.
IL 5-8  RL 5.0
ISBN 0064408906
(3 booktalks)
Booktalk #1

Who sent the one-word message "TELL" to 13 year old Brodie? No one saw what happened out at Toadstool rock in Blackwater River. Brodie didnít mean to hurt Pauline or Otis and now that his cousin Alex has told everyone a different story about what happened, why come out with the truth now? Is Alex playing with Brodieís head, trying to get something out or the situation or did someone else witness the accident? How long can Brodie live the lie as more and more people consider him a hero and he watches the impact on the families in his town? Guilt is tearing him up inside and the only person he can talk to is manipulating Alex, someone he cannot trust. This contemporary issues novel written by veteran Eve Bunting keeps you turning the pages from beginning to end. (New Hampshire Great Stone Face Committee)

Booktalk #2

Thirteen-year-old Brodie Lynch's life changes forever one summer day when he takes his cousin Alex to swim in the Blackwater River. Brodie had been looking forward to the summer and its joys: a planned camping trip, maybe a movie date with a special girl. But here is that girl  with another boy! Brodie's jealous attempt to sneak up and startle them ends in tragedy when they are swept into the treacherous river current, and they drown. Brodie tries to save them and is treated as a local hero, but Alex and a mysterious witness know the truth and Brodie's terrible secret. Guilt consumes Brodie as he is faced with the choice of protecting the lie and his hero status, or admitting the truth and accepting responsibility for the tragedy. What will he do? Will he choose right or wrong? This is a gripping coming-of-age adventure, well worth reading.  (Jeannie Bellavance bellavance@erols.com for Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Awards)

Booktalk #3

This book is about 13 year-old Brodie Lynch whose life turns upside down when he finds out his 12 year-old cousin, Alex, is staying for the summer. Well Alex doesnít know how to swim so Brodie was going to teach him. They walk down to the Blackwater.  Brodie told Alex it's so early no one would be there. When they get there, there are already two people on the rock in the middle of the pond. Pauline Genero and Otis McCandles looking like they are boyfriend and girlfriend. Pauline was suppose to have four dates with Brodie this summer. So he was mad and swam out without being seen. He grabbed Paulineís feet. She and Otis flipped over into the Blackwater! Pauline is found two days later, dead, but Otis is nowhere to be seen. Three days after that, a note is left at the door of Brodie's house. It said "tell". Did Otis write it? Is he alive? Who knows. You have to read the book to find out.  (Annie, student)

SUBJECTS:      Drowning -- Fiction.
                        Death -- Fiction.
                        Guilt -- Fiction.

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