On this day in 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall, a direct hit on New Orleans that caused the levees to fail and resulted in massive flooding.
A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld. Neufeld picks six people, from completely different socio-economic walks of life and different neighborhoods and tells their stories both before and after Hurricane Katrina. Some evacuate, some end up in the Superdome. Some lose everything, some are fine, but all are forever changed, just like the city. Originally published for adults, teens will enjoy this full-color graphic novel.
Ruby's Imagine by Kim Antieau. Even at 18, Ruby lives in a rich imaginary world, where she remembers her parents and can talk to the trees and animals. When the trees and butterflies tell her a 'big spin' is coming, Mammaloose and others dismiss it. But after Katrina hits, Ruby starts to wonder, and learn, how much is her imagination, and how much is real.
Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes. There are signs everywhere, trying to tell them something, but Lanesha and Mama YaYa can't figure out what. Lanesha's teased at schools for her witchy ways, but a popular girl doesn't mind and starts to be her friend, and a new teacher encourages Lanesha's interest in engineering. Everything's starting the look up, and then the neighborhood clears out as Katrina comes. But, once the storm is over, the real trouble begins.
Hurricane Katrina: The Storm That Changed America by the editors of Time Magazine. This book gathers Time's reporting and, most notably, its photographs to document the storm and its aftermath.
Pawprints of Katrina: Pets Saved and Lessons Learned by Cathy Scott. When Katrina approached, most evacuation centers wouldn't let people bring their pets. In the aftermath of the levee failure, animals lay stranded and endangered until volunteers came to rescue them. In addition to many heartwarming and heartbreaking stories about these rescues, this book also covers the legal battle to make sure that animals would be protected in future disasters.
Beneath a Meth Moon by Jacqueline Woodson. In Mississippi, Laurel looks like she has her life on track, but she turns to meth to forget what happened, to forget her life in New Orleans, and to forget when Katrina came and Laurel lost everything, and everyone.
Hurricane Song: A Novel of New Orleans by Paul Volponi. After his mother's remarriage, Miles moves in with his father. His father concentrates on jazz, while Miles focuses on football, making the team and dreaming of playing pro. When Miles gets to the Superdome though, it's not for football, but rather taking shelter after Katrina hits.
Hurricane Force: In the Path of America's Deadliest Storms by Joseph B. Treaster. Using Katrina as his focus, Treaster examines and explains the science behind why hurricanes form and why they're so dangerous.
Disasters: Natural and Man-Made Catastrophes Through the Centuries by Brenda Z. Guiberson. This book looks at 10 major disasters, what caused them, what happened, and what the short- and long-term effects were.
What are your Katrina must-reads?
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