Rain Tonight: A Story of Hurricane Hazel

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9780887766411: Rain Tonight: A Story of Hurricane Hazel

The weather forecast for the evening of October 15, 1954 was simply “rain tonight.” In fact, the hurricane was a devastating one. The storm swept from North Carolina up into Canada. In Toronto, Ontario, the official death count was 81, but it was probably much higher because the many people living in the ravines were not part of the census.

Penny Doucette was 8 years old on the night the storm raged in Toronto. She, her parents, and their elderly neighbor found themselves clinging to the roof of the house as they watched the house next door float away on the swollen Humber River. Augmenting the dramatic story are illustrations, archival photographs, and fascinating information about hurricanes: their causes, their history, and lore.

Published for the fiftieth anniversary of Hurricane Hazel, this is a valuable resource for young readers.

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About the Author:

Steve Pitt was born in Weston, Ontario on October 15th, 1954 – the night Hurricane Hazel devastated Southern Ontario. He has been fascinated by the storm ever since. He has been a writer for twenty-five years, during which time he has also worked as a youth outreach worker, a goose rancher, a gold prospector in the Yukon, an armored truck guard, and resort cook. He holds a Master of Divinity degree, two black belts in tae kwon do, and is currently studying to be a chef. His articles have appeared in Canadian Family, Healthwatch, Rotunda, Legion Magazine, The Globe and Mail, and Stitches Magazine. This is Steve Pitt’s first book.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 2-5–Pitt recounts the story of Hurricane Hazel's deadly 1954 pass over a small town near Toronto, Canada. His narrative follows the fortunes of second-grader Penny Doucette and her family as floodwaters rise into the second story of their house and they are forced to seek refuge on the roof in the howling wind and rain. Terrified, they watch as a neighbor's house is swept from its foundations, and pray that a small rescue boat will reach them before their own home is torn loose. Average-quality, black-and-white drawings appear throughout. The Doucettes' luck in surviving is also reinforced by the period photos that recorded the devastation of a once-comfortable community. Fact boxes appear throughout, but some of the damage data is no longer valid following the multiple storms of fall 2004. While not an essential purchase, this title could provide a personal view to a unit grounded in such stellar works as Patricia Lauber's Hurricanes: Earth's Mightiest Storms (Scholastic, 1996) and Seymour Simon's Hurricanes (HarperCollins, 2003), or reinforce the impact of Victoria Sherrow's more tightly focused Hurricane Andrew: Nature's Rage (Enslow, 1998).–Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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