The Missing Manatee
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
All Skeet Waters wants is to catch a big, beautiful tarpon on his fly rod - and to keep everything else in his life in Florida the way it's always been. But on his spring break from school, Skeet overhears his mother telling his father to move out permanently. Then, while riding in his boat to escape his parents' troubles, he discovers a manatee that's been shot in the head. Skeet puts aside his search for the manatee and its killer when Dirty Dan the Tarpon Man offers to take him out to catch his first tarpon on a fly. Because of Dan, Skeet begins to unravel the mysteries surrounding the manatee's apparent murder and his parents' dissolving marriage. Skeet discovers that life is a lot like tarpon fishing, in which you can't look just at the surface of the water - you have to look through it, at what lies beneath.
Family Relationships; Separation; separated parents
Booklist Top 10 Mystery/Suspense for Youth, 2006
Children's Catalog, Nineteenth Edition, 2006
100 Best Children's and YA Mysteries of the Past Decade, 2015
Edgar Allan Poe Awards, 2006, Nominee, Best Juvenile
boating; manatees; fishing; Florida; police
DeFelice, Cynthia, "The Missing Manatee" (2005). Diverse Families. 1151.