A gifted debut about a small town whose fault lines are exposed with a little girl goes missing. A novel that will appeal to readers of books like The Feast of Love by Charles Baxter, Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng, Vampires in the Lemon Grove by Karen Russell, and A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
by Deborah Kennedy
Flatiron Books, Fall 2017
“Deborah Kennedy’s vision is as clear as her embrace is wide. With Tornado Weather, she has given us a novel that startles and surprises from the first page to the last, turning our heads again and again. Yet the thunderclaps the book produces are not those of a thriller, despite the missing child at its center, but of how many human beings it seems to know, and how variously it inhabits them. In the abundance with which it is populated, and the diversity with which it is colored, it offers something considerably more than the fragments of a few stray characters. It offers the mosaic of an entire community.”—Kevin Brockmeier, bestselling author of « The Brief History of the Dead »
When the bus driver drops nine-year-old Daisy off at the end of her road, it is the last time anyone sees her alive. A child going missing is bad enough, but the local dairy farm has been shut down, scandalizing the town and leaving dozens of immigrants jobless, an event that threatens to escalate the town’s already heated racial tensions. Now the residents of the town are forced to confront some intense truths about themselves.
Shifting between the voices of the bus driver, an undercover reporter writing an exposé of the dairy farm, the man whose job it is to scrape the roadkill off the highways, the police officer desperate to find Daisy, a soldier overseas dreaming of his hometown, a boy who talks to animals, and other members of this small community, TORNADO WEATHER is an affecting portrait of a complex and flawed cast of characters striving to find some measure of fulfillment in their lives.
Unsettling, dark, and at times funny, the narratives bring the town’s rich fabric to life and though the characters’ triumphs are often modest, the hope for redemption is real—and Kennedy brilliantly shows that there is nothing average about an average life.
Deborah Kennedy is a native of Fort Wayne, Indiana and a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Salon, Sou’wester, Third Coast Magazine, and The North American Review. Deborah has worked as both a reporter and editor, and also holds a Master’s in Fiction Writing and English Literature from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She is very well connected in literary circles and we anticipate a lot of attention for her debut.