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and life along the winding road

Friday, October 18, 2013

Falling to Earth by Kate Southwood

Only one family remains untouched after a tornado barrels through an Illinois town in Kate Southwood's novel Falling to Earth.

While families try to recover from the devastation, Paul Graves and his family help where they can. Dead bodies, which his wife cleans and covers with sheets, are placed on their porch . But even with all the family's efforts, the town people are upset that not only was the Graves family house spared but also Paul's lumberyard. They begin to resent buying their lumber from him to rebuilt their homes, and at the makeshift school, the Graves children are told they should act normally because unlike other families, they neither had the loss of relatives nor property. (The devastation is reminiscent of the Oklahoma tornado this year.)
It's a touching story about how a town manages after such an horrific experience.
What stopped me from getting totally immersed into the story though, was that it is written in present tense.

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