One summer chasing tornadoes could finally change Jane’s life for the better
Seventeen-year-old Jane McAllister can’t quite admit her mother’s alcoholism is spiraling dangerously out of control until she drives drunk, nearly killing them and Jane’s best friend.
Jane has only one place to turn: her older brother Ethan, who left the problems at home years ago for college. A summer with him and his tornado-chasing buddies may just provide the time and space Jane needs to figure out her life and whether it still includes her mother. But she struggles with her anger at Ethan for leaving home and feels guilty–is she also abandoning her mom just when she needs Jane most? The carefree trip turned journey of self-discovery quickly becomes more than Jane bargained for, especially when the devilishly handsome Max steps into the picture.
Going into The Waiting Sky, I had no expectations. It was my first book by Lara Zielin and I had heard pretty much nothing about it. However, had I gone in with the highest expectations The Waiting Sky would have exceeded them. I was completely blown away by this book (pun totally intended!)
Jane is a very realistic character. She’s seen so much sadness in her life that she doesn’t really expect happiness, especially not with the brother who abandoned her. She’s reserved and pretty unwilling to trust people. However all that starts to change the more time she spends with her brother, Ethan, the Tornado Brothers, and Max. Sure, it doesn’t happen overnight but that’s what makes this story (and Jane) even better and more realistic.
Ethan, Jane’s much older brother, is her complete opposite. He’s unwilling to let his alcoholic mother walk all over him and he’s determined to stop her from walking all over Jane as well. He’s kind, funny, outgoing, and completely charming. He’s exactly what Jane needs even if she doesn’t know it. The rest of the Tornado Brothers, his stormchasing team, are also like family to Jane although it takes a little time for them to get to that point. They have problems, sure, but they look out for each other. They help bring Jane out of her shell. Then there is Max. Max is not your typical love interest. He comes off as rich and stuck up at first but it quickly becomes clear that he is a total nerd. He’s sweet, funny, and oh so lovable. I have a little bit of a crush on him!
The characters aren’t all that make The Waiting Sky awesome, though. The story is completely unique and totally gripping. Jane leaves behind her alcoholic mother to chase tornadoes with her brother. Let me just tell you, I will never be crazy enough to chase storms but I had a blast reading about it. There is some scientific information thrown in but it wasn’t boring at all. It was necessary to the story and I actually found it very interesting. The Waiting Sky is one of the most gripping contemporaries I have read.
Overall, The Waiting Sky is my first Lara Zielin book but it definitely won’t be my last. Check it out!