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The Whistling Toilets Hardcover – September, 1996

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When 15-year-old tennis champ Ginny Forrester starts losing games, it is up to her best friend, Stan Claxton, to set her back on a winning course. There are complications aplenty, however, when Stan takes over as coach. Ginny has not yet recovered from her crush on a former mentor; Stan is constantly distracted by Ginny's good looks; and Stan's two rather uncouth buddies, Guballa and Wilcutts, have also fallen for the attractive athlete. Meanwhile, one of Ginny's opponents, eccentric Antonia Wheeler, tries to lure Stan by walking off with his most prized possession, a Derbyshire XQ-2R-200S tennis racket. Readers need not be sports enthusiasts to feel the energy and catch the humor of this narrative about a falling sports star and the "boy next door," especially because the verbal matches between teens prove to be more exciting than on-the-court battles. If the plot (which culminates with Ginny and Stan listening to "whistling toilets" inside a lodge rest room) is somewhat strained, Powell's (Dean Duffy) ironies about love and gamesmanship are executed with style. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 7-10?Humorous and serious elements clog up the works in this novel. When nationally ranked, junior tennis superstar Ginny Forrester is sent home from the tournament circuit because of her loss of self-discipline and productivity, the girl's parents, team psychologist, and coach enlist the aid of her friend Stan Claxton to coach her in a small-time, local tournament and to find out the reason for the slump. Characters and plot threads are uneven. Ginny, Stan, and his two misfit buddies are amusingly drawn with dialogue that rings true. But Ginny's oddball, first-round tennis competitor, a wealthy, glamorous girl, is as hard to believe as Ginny's parents, who seem more concerned with her losing her game than why it is happening. The impact of Ginny's revelation to Stan that her tennis coach and mentor came on to her and guilt over her own involvement in the incident is lessened by Stan's guilt over an expensive tennis racquet that he acquired by dubious means. The boy's moral support helps her comeback in the tournament and in her life; a romantic interlude helps Ginny put things in perspective. In a confrontation with the coach, Stan turns down his previously offered job, cum "bribe," as a counselor at his ritzy tennis camp. In a light moment, he bares his soul to Ginny and shares a mystical, secret experience?the whistling toilets of the title. Laced with amusing bits, the plot elements just don't go with the flow. In the end, crooning commodes overflow with happy endings that don't quite work.?Alice Casey Smith, Sayreville War Memorial High School, NJ
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 243 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux; First Edition edition (September 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374383812
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374383817
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,684,039 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When I first looked at this book, I was a little nervous because the title was somewhat strange. But once i started reading it, I could NOT put it down. It was amazing. Great writing, and I would definetly read it again. I recommend it to anyone between the ages of 13 and 18, even though I read it when I was 12. I think all teenagers can relate to it.
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By Hojo on November 25, 2003
Format: Paperback
I was wondering around the library during my lunch for a change and when the library lady came to tell me to do something i quickly grabed a book from the shelf and it was this! IT WAS FATE I COULDENT PUT IT DOWN! Seriously if u havent read this book borrow it or but it or whatever JUST READ IT!
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Format: Paperback
At the age of fifteen, Ginny is a nationally ranked tennis player on the fast track toward becoming a star. But for some reason she is in a slump. No one seems to be able to figure out what is wrong with her. In desperation, her coach enters her in a small local tournament. He also asks her oldest childhood friend, Stan, who was once on the fast track himself, to act as her coach through this tournament. Stan hasn't seen Ginny in over a year, and he isn't sure he is the one who can break her out of her slump, but he agrees to coach her.

When Ginny does return home, Stan finds himself sunk into confusion. He can't figure out what is wrong with her or how to help. Her attitudes toward tennis worry him. Even more worrisome for Stan are his feelings for Ginny. They grew up together and were always best friends. Now he feels more and more attracted to her, though. Does she share his feelings?

This book was very strange and parts of it were really funny. I liked reading the weird things Stan and Ginny were thinking. I also really liked the interaction Stan had with the little kids he coached, and I wish there had been more of that. I didn't like the end of the book at all, though. There was no real resolution. Ginny and Stan's relationship wasn't really defined, so I wasn't sure where they stood. Also, Stan did something at the end of the story that didn't seem at all true to his character and didn't have a good reason behind it.
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