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Ratings and Book Reviews (4 25 star ratings
4 reviews
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4.5 out of 5
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    4 different women

    An interesting read which relates well to the time zone for which it is written.
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    Sophie Green's second novel

    "The Shelly Beach Swimming Circle". This was a most enjoyable book. I didnt want to put it down. I too love swimming, everyday if possible, so I had an affinity for these characters. The characters are real and tell the story of women's friendships. How a very diverse group of women with nothing in common other than a love of swimming come together and establish the. Type of friendship that every woman wants in her life. They travel through the ups and downs of life, illness, loneliness, divorce etc helping each other amidst the ocean swimming battling the vagaries of the weather, ferocity of the waves and bluebottles. The small group of friends is so diverse. Reading about the companionship, it is a real joy to read. Such real characters and situations.
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    Great

    Really enjoyed the four characters. Great story line,one I could really relate to.
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    1980s vintage story about friendship

    Welcome to coastal Australia in 1982. This is the story of four women who come into each other's lives when they take up ocean swimming at sunrise. Every morning, each turning up for their own reasons. They are very different women, in different stages of life. Marie is the sage widower, who now lives life largely alone. Theresa is a married mother of two, whose useless husband is practically a third child. She starts swimming to improve her figure but immediately falls in love with it and craves that time to herself every day. Leanne is a quiet young nurse who is isolated by choice and circumstance. She is learning to swim as an adult. Elaine has immigrated to Australia with her doctor husband. She's listless, desperately misses her two adult children who remain in England and turning to gin a bit more often than she should. They each have different swimming abilities but are united by the act of diving into the waves, no matter how scared they may be. They face bluebottles and life change alike, laugh so hard they swallow water, and purge their tears into the ocean. Over the three years of the book, the four characters deal with loneliness, adultery, assault, addiction, serious illness, difficult family relationships, self-doubt, change and forgiveness. The constant throughout this turmoil is their morning swim. They start as strangers and grow to be great friends, supporting each other and learning that the flip side of being vulnerable is the strong bonds that are formed. This story is ostensibly about friendship, but also about the evolution of self: choices, priorities and how people change for others.

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