We’ve experienced a lot of bad weather throughout history, and recently there seems to be more frequent weather events. No matter how “civilized” and technologically advanced we become, nature is going to win in the end. And how weather affects us and our communities and our planet makes for interesting and thoughtful reading.
Our main title this month is Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver. Tired of living on a failing farm and suffering oppressive poverty, bored housewife Dellarobia is headed for a secluded mountain cabin to initiate what she expects will be a self-destructive affair. Instead, she walks into something on the mountainside she cannot explain or understand: a forested valley filled with a lake of silent red fire that appears to her a miracle. In reality, the forest is ablaze with millions of butterflies. Their usual migratory route has been disrupted, and what looks to be a stunningly beautiful view is really an ominous sign, for the Appalachian winter could prove to be the demise of the species. Her discovery of this phenomenon ignites a media and religious firestorm that changes her life forever.
Alternate titles include:
Isaac’s Storm by Erik Larson. September 8, 1900, began innocently in the seaside town of Galveston, Texas. Even Isaac Cline, resident meteorologist for the U.S. Weather Bureau, failed to grasp the true meaning of the strange deep-sea swells and peculiar winds that greeted the city that morning. Mere hours later, Galveston found itself submerged by a monster hurricane that completely destroyed the town and killed over 6,000 people in what remains the greatest natural disaster in American history.
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. This epic story of the Great Depression chronicles the Dust Bowl migration of the 1930s and tells the story of one Oklahoma farm family, the Joads—driven from their homestead and forced to travel west to the promised land of California.
Also available as an ebook.
The Children’s Blizzard by Melanie Benjamin. Draws on oral histories of the Great Plains blizzard of 1888 to depict the experiences of two teachers, a servant, and a reporter who risk everything to protect the children of immigrant homesteaders.
Look for these titles and many more on displays at each of our locations!