by Edward Bloor

Start Free Trial

Why did Paul and Erik Fisher's family move to Florida in Edward Bloor's novel Tangerine?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In Edward Bloor's young reader's novel Tangerine, protagonist middle schooler Paul Fisher, along with his older brother Erik, must move with his family from Houston, Texas, to Lake Windsor in Tangerine County, Florida, because his father has been hired to work a new job.

More specifically, his father has been hired by the county Department of Civil Engineering as the director of civil engineering. Later, we learn that he has been hired to manage a "small army of contractors" to stabilize a sinkhole and make sure it doesn't happen again. The sinkhole opened up in the soccer field of Lake Windsor Middle School after a torrential rain storm and temporarily uprooted students though did not injure any students. Paul's father has to take a lot of heat working his new job from reporters who want to know how the Department of Civil Engineering could be so stupid as to build a school "over a huge sinkhole" (p. 85). Matters are made worse when Paul's Dad can't find the geological surveys that were supposed to be conducted before building. Paul is also disappointed when he realizes he'll have to transfer to Tangerine Middle School for the rest of the year. But on the upside, Paul tries out for the new school's soccer team and is happy when he is made goalie.

Approved by eNotes Editorial
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In the book Tangerine, why did Erik's family move to Florida?

Erik’s family moved to Florida because of its football craze which would increase Erik’s chances of being scouted and awarded a scholarship. Additionally, Mr. Fisher had accepted an engineering job there. However, the family had a difficult time adjusting to their new home. Erik’s parents adored him for his exceptional skill but ignored their other, less talented, legally blind son Paul. Even though Erik tormented Paul and Paul tried to bring it to his parent’s attention, they did not take heed. It was in Florida that Erik’s bad nature revealed itself when he got into trouble for being part of a duo that committed multiple thefts in the neighborhood and caused a nuisance. Paul also revealed to the authorities about his brother’s involvement in the fatal injuries inflicted on Luis. During a confrontation between Paul and Erik, Paul had a vivid flashback in which he recalled the activities that led to his defective vision. Erik was responsible for his blindness, a fact that his parents had lied to him about throughout his childhood. In the end, Paul and his father have a chance to reconcile as he marked a new beginning in his life. The family's move to Florida, though intended to bolster Erik's football, turned out to be a chance for Paul to begin anew and mend his relationship with his parents. He also got the opportunity to play soccer and nurture his skills, a chance that he was denied in the previous town due to his vision.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Last Updated on