Thursday, June 23, 2011

Eyewall-H.W. “Buzz” Bernard

H.W. “Buzz” Bernard
BelleBooks, May 15 2011, $14.95
ISBN: 9781611940015

Hurricane Janet is predicted to be a category one when it hits the Georgia coast and barrier islands like St. Simons Island over the Labor Day weekend. Still though St. Simons has not felt the fury of a major hurricane in ages, officials suggest people leave for the mainland though many remain on the island.

Trish and Alan Grant decide to leave when the weather begins to turn ugly. However, one of their two children fifteen years old Sandy is missing; apparently meeting a boy she met on the internet. With their eight years old son Lee they search for their daughter. At the same time Air Force Hurricane Hunters Major Arlen Walker and Captain Karlyn Hill send back data from the Eyewall of the storm while they and the rest of the crew feel like The Charge of the Light Brigade; the Hurricane Center believes Janet is a category one. However, the new information may be too late to prevent a Katrina like disaster.

With a nod to Karen Harper’s Hurricane and 1992’s Andrew, retired Weather Channel meteorologist H.W. "Buzz" Bernard provides a tense thriller as a Catastrophic storm assaults the Georgia coast. Hurricane Janet is seen though the eyes of the Grant family battered and trapped on a resort island though the daughter angle is a bit overly melodramatic and the air force crew caught inside the Eyewall. Exciting from the moment the cast realizes this is not the predicted Minimal Category 1, readers will root for the heroic men and women (and hiss at Walker’s incredulous cartoonish spouse), but the story line is owned by Janet.

Harriet Klausner

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