So, there's not a national Tornado Preparedness Day. Many states and localities have one, but they occur at different times. Today is Tornado Preparedness Day here in Arlington, VA, so today is when we'll mark it with our tornado books.
Let the Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger. A guy who survived an F5 tornado that killed his parents with a secret past which includes the fact he can talk to the West Wind. The girl he dreams about, a wind spirit who's job is protecting him. They're in danger-- from their enemies and from their growing romance.
Death Wind by William Bell. Unable to cope with the possibility of being pregnant, Allie runs away from home. When she returns, a tornado devastates her town and destroys her house, and possibly her parents. A quick read and short read high on action and drama.
The Waiting Sky by Lara Zelin. Jane needs to leave her alcoholic mother behind, so she joins her older brother's tornado chasing team for the summer, all the while feeling guilty for leaving her mother behind.
Storm Kings: The Untold History of America's First Tornado Chasers by Lee Sandlin. This history is not just of our early (and current) obsession with tornadoes, but also of some of the biggest and worst tornadoes on record. It gets bonus points for including the Peshtigo fire-tornado.
Inside Tornadoes by Mary Kay Carson. This ones for younger kids, but I'm putting it on anyway, because it has the best pictures.
How to Build a House by Dana Reinhart. When Harper's dad and step-mom get divorced, she also loses her best friend and step-sister. She decides to escape by joining a service trip to help build a houses in a town that was devastated by a tornado.
We now enter the Oz portion of the list, because I couldn't help myself. It all starts with a tornado, right? Right.
Oz Reimagined: New Tales from the Emerald City and Beyond edited by John Joseph Adams and Douglas Cohen. This anthology of Oz-inspired stories comes from authors from Orson Scott Card to Jane Yolen, Jonathan Marberry to Rae Carson. The reimaginings span the gambit from hard-boiled crime to a Kansas circus, from cyber punk to Shanghai in 1919.
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire. The first in a series reexamining Oz, this one gives us Elphaba, an insecure girl trying to unseat a tyrannical ruler, who will grow up to be the Wicked Witch of the West.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, because if you haven't read the original yet, you really should.
What are your tornado must-reads?
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