The Waves


  • Laurie Sanders: Main protagonist of the novel, straight A student and head of her high school newspaper, The Gordon Grapevine. Initially supports the Wave but as the novel progresses she begins to see it for what it really is, a mini revival of the Third Reich. It is because of the fact that Laurie sees the Wave for what it is that she chooses to distance herself from it and all those who are involved; subsequently being branded as an "enemy".
  • Amy Smith: Laurie's long time friend, often in constant competition with Laurie, which is constantly putting strain on their friendship; a strain which finally comes to a boil when the Wave becomes in full swing and Laurie is no longer "special".
  • Robert Billings: Class loser who is more often than naught the butt of many jokes. Described as creepy and weird, and "he was a heavy boy with shirttails perpetually hanging out and his hair always a mess". [4] Robert Billings's sloppy appearance and lack of interest towards his studies stems from the fact that he lives in the shadow of his older brother, Jeff Billings, who was the quintessential model student. It is through the Wave that Robert is able to step out of his brother's shadow and establish his own personality (even though the Wave is all about unity), hence why Robert is really the only one who actually stands to lose something after the downfall of the Wave.
  • David Collins Laurie's boyfriend, described as "a tall, good-looking boy who was a running back on the football team". [4] Winds up getting in too deep with the Wave and carries it out from the classroom and onto the football field in an attempt to unite their losing team.
  • Ben Ross: High school history teacher who tends to get too engrossed in his work to the point where it occupies most of his time and thoughts "to the point where he tended to forget that the rest of the world existed". Some of the many things in which Ben Ross would devote his attention to were: American Indians, bridge, whales, and even the Third Reich. His personality is best described as obsessive to the point of insanity, mainly due to the incredible time and effort he puts into a particular field of interest. Also has a hard time getting the class interested in the lessons, devises a project called the Wave to build unity amongst the classroom while also showing what life in Nazi Germany was like. Initially it is met with great success, but soon goes too far.
  • Carl Block: Investigative reporter for The Gordon Grapevine perpetual funny man who is a "tall, thin guy with blond hair." [5]
  • Alex Cooper: Music reviewer for The Gordon Grapevine and friend to Carl Block. Is " stocky and dark. "[5]

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