Saturday, August 20, 2016

Book Review: Tumbling by Caela Carter

It is the first of two days at the USA Olympic Gymnastic Trials. 12 girls, ages 15 to 22 years old are set to take the stage on what will be the most critical part of their young lives. In two days, 8 events will decide whether they go to the Olympics or stay home.

Grace feels like she is a shoo-in for the team. She's a World Champion all round gymnast, and normally the best gymnast out there. She's consistent, and gymnastics is her life. Well, she is usually consistent, and those new problems she's having will fix themselves by the Olympics.

Leigh is working for her dream, and going to school. Her parents insisted she have a normal life, while competing, and this is it. Of course, she has her own secrets, but no one except Grace knows.

Wilhelmina missed out on the last Olympics because of her Birthday. Not it's four years later, and she has taken an unusual path to be here. Known as a vault specialist, she's kept her all round training secret. Making the team will question everything the US team does with training, however she wants it more than anything.

Camille made the team four years ago, and then had her dreams smashed. She's back to be an Olympic gymnast, but now she's had a more normal life, and doesn't know what she misses more. Being a gymnast, or being normal. She's the best vaulter here, but does she want it as bad.

Monica is here. She'll be lucky to even be here, and has little input from her coach, who happens to also be Grace's coach (and Grace's dad). She has one goal: Don't Fall. No one should notice her at all.

5 girls with 5 different backgrounds with one goal: The Olympics. Each has her own inner demons to fight, and also has to compete with each other. Can Grace and Leigh be friends when Leigh is better than Grace? Can Camille deal with her mom and boyfriend, both wanting such different things from her? Can Wilhelmina make it, when she's angered the coach of the US team? Will anyone notice Monica at all?

Fans of the Final Five, or gymnastics in general will LOVE this book. You will see stories that feel dragged from the headlines, and be caught into the behind the scenes action. No matter if you are a 4-year fan, or follow the quad from start to finish, Tumbling is a great read. Author Caela Carter gives the reader a complete inner eye to the back stage antics, and behind the screen world of gymnastics. If you are looking for more information on gymnastics, check out the non-fiction book, The End of the Perfect 10 by Dvora Meyers. I read the two together, and with the Olympics on the the background, it was a perfect 10!

I'll see you @ the library,

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