By Richard E. Noble
Andy Broome is the hero of this children’s novel, “Blue Rock Rescue.”
The setting for the story is the Blue Ridge mountain area with its low hanging fogs, rocky shorelines and rapid flowing mountain streams.
In the prologue we learn that Andy’s mother died tragically. We are not told how, when, where or why. But we are made aware of the emotional trauma to both Andy and his dad and the cautionary effects it has injected into both their lives. We get bits and pieces of an explanation as we follow along throughout the tale of Andy and his father’s everyday adaptations. And in Andy’s case we even hear his lost mother’s ghostly admonitions and sage advisories.
Andy meets Trudy, the new girl in town at the country bus stop. Andy loves horses and horseback riding. Trudy has no such desire and displays a rather hostile attitude to anything to do with horses.
The author of this tale is clearly knowledgeable on both horses and horseback riding. And the reader is introduced to many related terms and inside jargon.
Andy and Trudy do not hit it off immediately as friends but the relationship grows as the story progresses.
Both Andy and Trudy are captivating characters and their interaction is more than adequate to keep the reader’s attention and provide sufficient distraction from the initial question placed in the reader’s mind in the prologue, What happened to Andy’s Mother.
But Andy’s mother is not allowed to be forgotten. We are periodically exposed to her via Andy throughout the drama.
Trudy’s ability to better all the boys at any challenge, even baseball, adds an additional series of conflicts to the story that keeps the reader occupied and entertained.
The heroic and truly exciting and drama filled finale to this story puts all the pieces together in a breathless and daring rescue.
This is a great story for the teenage crowd. Lots of modern, country type, kid interplay and excitement.
For some reason I can’t explain, the drama of the ending of this not so complicated “Blue Rock Rescue” brought back to my mind the ending in that famous socially pertinent and penetrating novel by John Steinbeck, “The Grapes of Wrath.” The two books are not similar but the moral for the lust of life and living emphasized in the endings of both books must be what triggered my memory in that direction.
All in all “Blue Rock Rescue” was very entertaining even for this seventy year old.