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Flat Water Tuesday: A Novel

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  741 ratings  ·  173 reviews
Rob Carrey, the son of a working-class cabinetmaker,arrives at the Fenton School with a scholarship to row and a chip on his shoulder. Generations of austere Fenton men have led the rowing team, known as the God Four, to countless victories—but none are as important or renowned as the annualTuesday-afternoon race against their rival, Warwick.

But first Rob must complete mon
ebook, 368 pages
Published June 4th 2013 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published May 27th 2013)
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Diane S.
I have just added this book to books that have made a big impression on me. Rob Carrey, from a small town and with parents who want him to do better in life than they had, accepts a scholarship to crew on the God Four, even though this means repeating his senior year of high school. Have never much thought about crewing, know very little about it, but after this book I know quite a bit. As with most sports it takes commitment and much hard work to really be good, so Rob with his three fellow tea ...more
Nancy McKibben
Jul 13, 2013 Nancy McKibben rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers who like Ivy League setting/characters; who like Donna Tartt; who like literary fiction
Shelves: favorites, reviewed
Flat Water Tuesday
By Ron Irwin

Flat Water Tuesday is a gorgeous book. Ostensibly about the senior year of a rowing team known as the God Four (only God can beat them), the novel is also an examination of teamwork, competition, pain, love and the weight of familial expectations in prose as smooth as the water the team sculls over.

A fifth year scholarship student, Rob Carrey, attends an exclusive Connecticut prep school with the single goal of rowing well enough to attract the attention of an Ivy L
Ron Irwin turns out to be quite the story teller and I will be first in line if he writes something else. Here we have two time periods, one 15 years prior to the other about a crew of prep school rowers known as the God Four preparing for the big race, and then one of them recalling that time as he anticipates a school reunion while also going through an emotional time with his girlfriend.

This book is packed with emotions, about how emotional highs and lows can affect us at different times of
Jonathan Wolcott
You Can Graduate Any Time You Like, But You Can Never Leave

Like its ancestors (A Separate Peace, This Side of Paradise, The Final Club, Art of Fielding), Flat Water Tuesday is the story of an outsider, Rob Carrey, entering an elite academic institution (Kent School in CT, thinly veiled in the novel as the Fenton School), who simultaneously struggles with, reviles, admires and exposes its various trappings. But FWT departs from its literary forebearers in a crucial way - it gives the reader a ful
Rob Carrey is a young man with a chip on his shoulder against authority, but an amazing athlete. He is unpolished, a loner, who attends a high-brow boarding school and learns to work as part of a team on the school’s rowing team. The journey to his maturity is fraught with angst, rivalry and full of equally damaged teammates who all feel the pressure of being expected to be number one. The rich kid has issues, the lone girl on the team has issues, each member has their own personal demon that dr ...more
Successful relationships and winning teams mimic each other. They require trust. They require empathy. They, at times, require the surrendering of the self to better the union.

Flat Water Tuesday by Ron Irwin parallels relationships and teams in the telling of Rob Carrey’s teenage and adult life. The novel opens with a present-day letter sent to Rob from John Perry, one of his high school crew mates. The letter hints at events that occurred while Rob and John rowed in Fenton School’s elite rowing
I received this book in a goodreads first reads giveaway.

I didn't really know anything about rowing going into this novel, and I didn't need to; the writing is vivid/clear enough to understand what's going on, you get used to the more technical terms, etc. It's about a group of high school students essentially training for one very important race, and I can see how those with a background in rowing might get more out of this novel than I did, but ultimately this is a very human story that anyone
Shelly Johnson
I received the audio version thru a GoodReads FirstReads giveaway.

If you are into audio books, this is a MUST! Wonderful story, wonderful writing and FANTASTIC narration!! Even if you have never thought of rowing, or even care for rowing, I still this is is so much more in this book. The struggles they face as a team, and individually are very intense. You feel the struggle and the tension and fear dealing with "the big secret". I found myself wanting to listen more and more to learn the horrib
Betsy Mitchell
Page-turner with wonderful, clear descriptions. I came to care for the characters and revel in their victories. The story moves along like a wind rippling on the calm water and draws you into its curving path. The rowing element is very tangible and the conflicts within the sport create a tale that is both memorable and haunting.
Surprisingly intoxicating. It took me a couple of chapters to really get into it, but once I did I was hooked.

Flat Water Tuesday is the story of Rob Carrey, a champion single sculler (rower) recruited to Fenton to row in their 4-person winning crew team, known as the "God Four". The novel plays in the past and present, the past being Rob's journey in his year at Fenton, the present being adult Rob, a documentary filmmaker, dealing with the end of a current relationship and the 20yr reunion at F
This novel was very interesting with the theme of sculling and rowing and the competitive nature of this sport. I never realized the amount of strategy and skill involved. I enjoyed the characters and the past and present of the main character, Rob Carrey. The author's writing style of leaving you in a suspenseful state at the end of a section or chapter and switching the story to the past life or present situation made for a page turner. I highly recommend this novel!
Flat Water Tuesday by Ron Irwin shines! It delivers with emotional depth, making you think, and teaching you about rowing training, competitions and relationships. At first, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to read it because I have never rowed. Then I remembered watching the Olympic rowing races and being enthralled with them. Now I want to see more of them.

Rob Carrey, a documentary film maker for National Geographic receives an invitation to his 15th class reunion from a Connecticut prep school wit
Eileen Granfors
There is a whole library of books about outsiders at exclusive prep schools. I went to public school, but I am fascinated by the pecking order, the rituals, and the pedigree required for some prestigious schools.

In Ron Irwin's FLAT WATER TUESDAY, the story of Rob Carrey brings in the added arena of competitive rowing. Rob has won a singles title, and Fenton School decides he is the man to bring back the glory days of their crew program.

Rob will have to repeat his senior year to attend, but he ha
Lori Henrich
Rob is pursued by Fenton School, a private school, to redo his Senior year with them. They want him to become a member of the rowing team, with the hopes that Rob can help them beat a rival school. Even though Rob has already graduated, he agrees to attend with the hopes of being able to go on to a better college than what is available to him currently. The story goes flows back and forth between the present and the year that Rob attended Fenton. The memories start playing through Rob's mind whe ...more
A kid named Rob Carrey ends up at the tony Fenton prep school with a full ride scholarship to row, hopefully in the God Four- the boat to win against Warwick. Finally.

Carrey arrives belligerent and sullen; every other kid there has money, lots of money and he's there from a working class family only because the school expects results from him. He is determined to despise the other rowers. But the coxswain- first female ever- Ruth dissuades him; she encourages him to get along.

The book switches f
Maureen Bauer
I really enjoyed this read. It was a topic I knew very little about, but the interesting thing about it was that the author had participated in the sport of rowing and he based his novel on that particular sport. I really enjoyed his writing style, and the way the story was laid out with current events in Robert Carrey's life, while including flashbacks to his rowing days on a team at a small New England Prep school. Winning the race mattered, but so many other events mattered even more, and sho ...more
Jeff Swartz
Don't know anything about rowing, didn't think I wanted to know anything about rowing, but this book was terrific and I especially liked all the rowing stuff!
A coming of age story that will fit neatly on the shelf with all the greats.
I can see this being assigned in High Schools for years to come.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Morgan Lee
Flat Water Tuesday was a really captivating book for me, and ultimately held my attention throughout. The transitions between past and present were flawless, and the relationships, whether between friends or lovers were realistic and interesting. There was not a part of the book that failed to hold my attention, and no part lacked in the melodrama of real life. The characters were relatable and deep - so much so that I found myself becoming invested in even the hardest to love individuals. I can ...more
"This is the second book I've read recently that I think of as 'chick-lit' written by men with male main characters."

I am challenged by the exquisite thought and insight that compelled this innovative reviewer to redefine the literary realm of romance; regardless, I shall endeavor to proceed with due reverence.

Ron Irwin is emphatic that this book is primarily a love story. Although I agree, the better definition upon reading and appreciating the novel would be that it is, in fact, a human story
the son of a working class cabinet maker gets a rowing scholarship to Fenton a prestigious boarding school where he repeats his last year of high school but accelerated. he rows, he learns, the rowers live through a tragedy. their lives move forward albeit very separately. our protagonist meets a woman with whom he is in love. the rowers, some of them, meet up again at the 15 year reunion. lots of detail about what it takes to be a rower. personal stuff happens. blah, blah. now that I'm writing ...more
Best book of summer reading 2013! Similar to A Separate Piece but even better.
Carol Stanley-Snow

I have no knowledge about rowing. Always thought 'skull' was my head! LOL!

Anyway, this is a very powerful book. The rowing is only a part of the story, sort of like the glue that holds the story together. The people, characters of the novel are so compelling.

I liked the way the chapters went from one era (school, rowing) to present day. Rob Carrey, the center of the story, proves that life may not always be easy, simple or clean. It is full of up
Taryn Pierson
Books that are heavy on sports and sports metaphors can be tiring for me. There were moments in reading this book, which is about a boy who joins an elite prep school rowing team, when the sportsiness was admittedly a bit much. It just seemed like everyone spent a lot of time on the verge of throwing up. I don’t mean this figuratively at all. These high school rowers would push themselves so hard physically that they would barf, bleed, drool, sweat, and cry. All so that they could row their boat ...more
Rob Carey is a teenager that comes from a working class family and goes to an elite private school (thanks to a scholarship) for a year of rowing. Rob is a rower. Rob has a chip on his shoulder. The world is against Rob. Rob is angry at the world. Rob is a teenager. This is a coming of age story, twice over. We meet Rob as a teenager trying to prove himself to everyone (while making it look like he just doesn't care). And we also meet Rob as an adult, now a documentary videographer going through ...more
I listened to this on audio. The story, about a prep school rowing team and a reunion of the school years later, really felt like other dramatic books I've read. Trying to place it, I'd consider it like an early Pat Conroy novel, but without a hint of humor. It is a very serious book throughout. The details of competitive rowing were new to me -- I didn't realize the amount of training that goes on. In fact, in this book the characters don't even get into a boat until about 2/3 of the way throug ...more
I was sent an advance copy of this audio book and decided to give it a try since I have a 35-40 minute drive to work, and wanted something to listen to in the car. I soon found myself wanting to load the CDs onto my ipod so I could continue listening when I wasn't in the car!

I rowed my freshman year of high school in Northern Virginia, so maybe I connected to the materiel more than most, but I found this to be a pretty compelling story. I was longing for those days on the water and found myself
When I first saw this book I characterized it as a story about a guy who rows. When I started reading it I found that it is so much more. The main character, Rob, attends a prestigious prep school for one year after his high school graduation, to make the crew team and get the chance to attend an ivy league university. Events of that year shape the lives of all who were involved. The story begins 15 years after that prep school year with a letter to Rob from one of his former teammates. I was in ...more
Alternating between past and present, this novel focuses on the small, intense world of rowers at a New England prep school. Early on, allusions are made to an eventual tragedy. The reader soon grasps the unique level of dedication required of those committed to this sport. Torturous, grueling, constant training throughout the seasons was expected. A talented rower, the protagonist is a product of public school. He has chosen to complete additional year in this world of privilege, in hopes of be ...more
Kasa Cotugno
This book covers the importance of competition in the shaping of character. Most readers will recognize the stresses experienced by young athletes at the school level, especially when those athletes show talent in a particular field, in this case, crew. Rob Carrey comes from a working class background, and is granted an extra senior year at a prestigious prep school that seems to feature a utopian setting guaranteed to provide children of privilege who are promising future captains of industry w ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Pls Add an Audiobook to My profile 6 18 Mar 05, 2013 05:04AM  
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Ron Irwin is an American writer who divides his time between Cape Town, South Africa and various places in the United States. He grew up in Buffalo, New York, where he learned to row. He attended boarding school and college in New England, where he was part of a number of winning crews. Ron has worked as a journalist, a documentary filmmaker, and as a teacher. He currently lectures in the Centre f ...more
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