Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of Katrina
By Rodman Philbrick
New York: Blue Sky Press, 2014.
Grades 5 and Up
The story of twelve year old Zane Dupree is the story of someone being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Zane is bi-racial, living with his widowed mom in New Hampshire. Since Zane’s dad died before he was born his mom is making attempts to get him, to know his dad through the woman that raised Zane’s Dad. She puts Zane on a plane late August of 2005, along with his dog Bandit, to visit Beatrice Jackson (Miss Trissy)—his great grandmother in the Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans. Zane is visiting with Miss Trissy when mandatory evacuation orders are made because of an incoming hurricane. With no transportation she starts to pack up and look for transportation out of town but there are complications and the storms sweeps in.
Here are the true details of the storm: On August 23, 2005 a tropical depression formed over the Bahamas by the 25th it is a Category 1 Hurricane that crossed into Florida. Then that hurricane crossed over Florida and gained strength in the Gulf’s warm waters. By the 29th a Category 5 Hurricane makes landfall in New Orleans and a few hours later the levee that protects New Orleans collapses and the most destructive flood of all times hits New Orleans.
One thing led to another and Miss Triss is on her way north while Zane and Bandit are trapped in the attic of her home. Temperatures in the attic reached in excess of 100 degrees and the water rose to just under the attic door—they were trapped. This is where many people died in New Orleans but something miraculous happens to Zane—a man and a girl in a canoe hear Bandit’s bark and save Zane. This is just the beginning of many terrible events of prejudice; discrimination, cruelty, and greed as the trio try to save themselves from one of the worst natural disasters to hit the United States.
Author Rodman Philbrick’s research of first person accounts makes Zane’s experiences seem very real and horrific. This book will change you—it is not for the faint of heart!
Mrs. R’s Summer Book #1