Saturday, November 8, 2014

Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of Katrina by Rodman Philbrick

Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of KatrinaZane, with his dog Bandy, travels to New Orleans where he meets his great-grandmother for the first time. Hurricane Katrina is on the way, and everyone in the city is ordered to evacuate. Zane and his grandmother hitch a ride with the minister from the church, but Bandy jumps out the window of the van. Zane goes after him, but the dog ends up running all the way back to grandmother's house. The power goes out, and flood waters start to swallow up the house. Zane manages to get on the roof where he's picked up in a canoe by a man and a young girl. That's when the adventure begins. They search for dry land, but the girl's past creates a problem. It seems a drug dealer wants to get his hands on her, so the group must find a way to escape this fearsome man along with the dangers of the hurricane.

The plot begins with surviving the hurricane, but it evolves into much more than that. The conflict with the drug dealer, poisonous snakes in the water, and frightened people willing to shoot anyone coming near their homes create a much bigger story than surviving a storm. The book addresses the subplots of Katrina. It's not just about the storm's devastation or feel-good stories of heroism. Pre-storm problems still existed, and some people were only concerned for themselves. The voice of the story is not complicated, and it's easy to follow.The storm's destruction is part of the story, but the plot goes well beyond it.

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