Doris Grumbach’s chilling look at the ways childhood experiences create transformative echoes that last throughout adulthood
“I want to lead you all into the ocean to see if you will drown.”
During the summer of 1929 four children come together and change the course of their lives forever. Caleb and Kate Flowers live an isolated existence with their mother until Lionel Schwartz and Roslyn Hellman come to Far Rockaway for the summer. Roslyn, quickly stepping in as ringleader, dominates the summer’s activities, and what appear to be innocent childhood games are actually very real confrontations with the group’s most closely held secrets. As the summer progresses, Caleb and Kate’s relationship grows from the affectionate love of siblings to something less innocent.
The ensuing years will bring profound realizations and undeniable passions for all four as they move through adolescence and grow up. Doris Grumbach’s acutely
intimate, deeply truthful, and often tragic tale of self-discovery never wavers.