Soul Surfer by Bethany Hamilton

Back cover: They say Bethany Hamilton has saltwater in her veins. How else could one explain the passion that drives her to surf? How else could one explain that nothing—not even the loss of her arm—could come between her and the waves? That Halloween morning in Kauai, Hawaii, Bethany responded to the shark’s stealth attack with the calm of a girl with God on her side. Pushing pain and panic aside, she began to paddle with one arm, focusing on a single thought: “Get to the beach….” And when the first thing Bethany wanted to know after surgery was “When can I surf again?” it became clear that her spirit and determination were part of a greater story—a tale of courage and faith that this soft-spoken girl would come to share with the world.

Soul Surfer is a moving account of Bethany’s life as a young surfer, her recovery after the attack, the adjustments she’s made to her unique surfing style, her unprecedented bid for a top showing in the World Surfing Championships, and, most fundamentally, her belief in God. It is a story of girl power and spiritual grit that shows the body is no more essential to surfing—perhaps even less so—than the soul.

Bethany tells her story about when she got her arm taken off by a shark at only thirteen, how she never lost her faith in God, and never gave up her dream. Most people would give up on their dreams if something life that happened to them, but Bethany kept in her mind that God had a plan, a plan bigger than she would have ever imagined.

This book was full of emotion, what she felt before, during, and after the accident. It encourages people—anyone—to reach for their dreams no matter what the circumstances are, and that God is bigger than the things that happen to you.

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Naomi Downing is a homeschooled high school student who live on a small farm in the middle of no where. She enjoys reading, writing, taking pictures and dreaming about her future. She blogs at

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