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Melanie Benjamin, author of California Golden

Southern California, 1960s. Carol Donnelly is a legendary female surfer struggling to compete in a male-dominated sport --- and her daughters, Mindy and Ginger, bear the weight of her unconventional lifestyle. The Donnelly sisters grow up enduring their mother’s absence, both physically and emotionally. To escape questions about Carol’s whereabouts --- and to chase her elusive affection --- they cut school to spend their days in the surf. From her first time on a board, Mindy is a natural, but Ginger, two years younger, feels out of place in the water. As they grow up and their lives diverge, Mindy and Ginger’s relationship ebbs and flows. But through it all, their sense of duty to each other survives, as they are forever connected by the emotional damage they carry from their unorthodox childhood.