As the novel gains momentum, Jenilee's transformation from a beaten-down young woman to a lady with emerging confidence is filled with emotion; her bulletin board of lost papers offers hope to those seeking to reclaim memories torn away by the tornadoes. Lisa Wingate's characters come to life as the whirling winds bring not just destruction but miracles and an opportunity for Jenilee to leave Poetry and become the woman she was destined to be.

When the small Missouri town of Poetry is decimated by tornadoes, 21-year-old Jenilee Lane begins recovering papers blowing in the wind— papers that may be important to those who lost almost everything. As she makes her way to the town's small armory, Jenilee also rescues Mrs. Gibson, her crabby elderly neighbor, from a storm cellar.

With the magnitude of the devastation, every available hand is needed to assist the injured at the armory. Jenilee's ability to function well under pressure and her caring manner endear her to Dr. Albright, whose inability to leave town landed him in the midst of the disaster. While it is often said that tragedy brings people together, that saying is especially true in this novel, where poor Jenilee is given the chance to use her abilities without the stain of her father's drunken, abusive behavior hanging over her.

(May, 304 pp., $12.95)

Reviewed by: 
Sheri Melnick