Free Style, by Raewyn Caisley

Tumble, twist, push! I exploded off the wall and for three or four seconds turned into a dolphin. Arms stretched out in front, probing ahead, reaching, feet trailing behind ready to burst back into action. My grey, white and blue bathers felt like a second skin.

Kate is midway through a pretty disastrous soccer season. Her Dad is a coach and wants her to be the star player. Trouble is, every time she takes the field she mucks up. In the swimming pool, though, it’s a different story. Kate feels one with the water, perfectly balanced and smooth as a machine. How can she convince her dad that she should give up soccer, the game he loves, and focus on swimming?

Free Style is the tale of one girl’s passion for swimming. Kate’s attitude to swimming (and to sport in general) is refreshing – what motivates her is her desire to enjoy what she is doing, rather than an overwhelming drive to win at all costs. This is an important message for children, and one which author Caisley delivers skilfully.

Part of the Lothian Sports Fiction series, Free Style will appeal to readers aged 10-12.

Free Style, by Raewyn Caisley
Lothian, 2006