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Sandra Sorenson-Kindt

Teddy: A Boy Who Swam with Angels

Author Sandra Sorenson-Kindt tells her father’s childhood story.

It is July 1938 in Arizona and nine-year-old Teddy is looking forward to the fourth of July celebrations, his favourite holiday. Teddy is one of six children, and although the siblings do not always get along, they are always there for one another. Teddy is sometimes called Mr. Serious and Weirdo by his brothers’ friends because he likes to read and talk to animals. On the morning of the fourth of July, the family head out to Tonto National Forest, for a picnic with their aunt, uncle, and cousins. As the parents prepare lunch, the children play dodgeball, frisbee and volleyball. When the children are called inside to get out of the hot Arizona sun, Teddy escapes the campsite for his own adventure. He wonders down the riverbank in search of wildlife, away from his annoying siblings and cousins. Teddy soon gets lost and starts to burn under the hot sun. But things get much worse for Teddy when he gets stuck in the mud, and then falls into a fast-flowing river. Teddy is swept far away from camp, but he floats on his back and treads water to keep afloat. When a storm arrives, the river swells, and Teddy is swept further downstream. Teddy is exhausted and gives up hope of seeing his family again. Will Teddy survive the rapid river torrent? And will he ever see his family again?

Teddy: A Boy Who Swam with Angels is a chapter book for middle grade readers by author Sandra Sorenson-Kindt. This is a sweet and charming story about a young boy in search of wildlife and adventure, who falls into a river and is swept far away from his family. When the boy gives up hope, he is rescued by an angel who pulls him out of the river and directs him to safety. When the boy questions why he was saved because he is just an ordinary kid, his mother explains that he is special to her and God. Set in the late 1930’s, prior to the outbreak of war in Europe, this is a wonderfully nostalgic book of a precious time gone by.

The author was inspired by the story of her father, who was swept away by a river on the fourth of July when he was a young boy. Her father believed he was saved by an angel that day. This is a beautifully written book, with exquisite, pencil drawn illustrations by Sandra Jessop.

Star rating: 5 Stars

Summary: A wonderfully nostalgic children’s book, with important life lessons for all ages.

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