Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Storm Runners

Storm Runners

Roland Smith
Fiction  Series
For ages 9 to 12
Scholastic , 2011   ISBN: 978-0545081757

A bit over a year ago, John Masters was struck by lightning. By some miracle he survived, and ever since that time he has been obsessed with learning about and trying to understand the weather. When the recession hit and his construction company began to go under, John sold his share of the business and his home and made a radical lifestyle change. Now he and his teenage son Chase travel around the country chasing storms. They get to towns and cities before storms arrive, help people prepare for what is coming, and then help them fix their homes and businesses.

This time Chase, his father, and his father’s business partner Tomas are driving to Florida. Hurricane Emily is on her way, and it looks as if she is going to be at least a category four storm, which means that there will be plenty of work to do once the storm has blown itself out.

When they get to Florida the storm hunters park their two trucks, fifth wheel trailer, and their semi tractor trailer on a privately owned farm, which is on higher ground. Then John and Tomas set off to help people prepare for the storm. Chase stays behind, and he soon finds out that the farm is not your typical farm with cows and sheep. Instead, it is where a circus leaves their animals in the winter. Nicole, the daughter of one of the circus’ owners, takes Chase around the farm, showing him the lion, leopard, a giraffe, and Pet the pregnant elephant.

The next morning Chase and Nicole head off for school. During the day, the students and teachers watch the TV to keep track of what is going on with Hurricane Emily. The news anchor and meteorologist are not too concerned about the hurricane, but Chase and his father know better. They have seen enough storms to know that Emily is going to be massive. Though everyone else thinks Chase is being “paranoid,” it turns out that he was right, and it isn’t long before he and Nicole are caught up in an adventure that might not have a happy ending.

This is the first book in what promises to be a thrilling series. At the end of the story, readers are left hanging, knowing that Chase, Nicole, and some of the other characters have survived the initial onslaught of the storm. However, we have not idea how they will fare in the aftermath.