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Book Review: High Surf

By Tim Baker

Nicely conceived and splendidly nuanced collection of profiles by Tim Baker, one of surfing’s very best writers and interviewers. These are cleanly-written, insightful visits with more than two dozen of surfing’s most inspiring individuals, who demonstrate that surfing is a way of life, and the ocean is the ultimate teacher. Here are Slater and Rastovich, Surf Aid International founder Dr. Dave Jenkins, Phyllis O’Donnell and Pauline Menczer, scientist Vezen Wu, Mark Richards and Bob McTavish, novelist Tim Winton, Mick Fanning and Ross Clarke-Jones, chef Steve Snow … you get the drift: the expected and the unexpected. High Surf introduces us to an intriguing cross-section of wave-riders, making for a truly satisfying and motivating read.

Lovely interstitial material elevated offerings from the likes of Lopez, Slater, Falzon, and Fanning, plus excerpts from notable works of surf and philosophy (i.e., Thoreau, Jimmy Buffet, Phil Edwards), along with a nice smattering of Baker’s own ‘Surf Lessons’ (i.e., “Don’t Think About Other Stuff When Paddling For A Wave”) – all wise and witty essays in themselves. This is a wonderful book, required reading for any surfer in search of soul food!

Best way to order High Surf is to go to Tim’s website (www.bytimbaker.com) and do the deed there.

Words DK

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