Monday Merchants: Tornado Books and Giveaway

I’ll never forget the story from Joplin, MO, of the husband and wife who lived in an upstairs apartment. When the tornado sirens went off, the husband suggested they go downstairs to a safe place. The wife was napping and didn’t want to be bothered, so she refused to go. The husband went downstairs and the tornado roared in like a giant vacuum cleaner, destroying most of central Joplin, including the upstairs apartment. Just minutes later, a rescue worker found the stunned husband. When he heard his story, he climbed up into the rubble to check on the woman. He found a woman, dead. Not knowing for sure if it was the wife of the man below, he took a photo on his phone, and climbed back down.

“Yes,” the husband said, dazed. “That’s her.”

You may already have Shatterproof, the book I wrote about the tornadoes of 2011. I’m going to give away a free signed copy today, so if you win it but already have it, feel free to pass it on to a naive neighbor, friend or family member who ignores weather warnings. You may save their life some day!

Shatterproof is unique in that it is almost like three books in one. It is divided into three sections: Hackleburg, Alabama; Ringgold, Georgia; and Joplin, MO. Besides the personal stories of people involved in these tornadoes, I’ve included gray boxes of fascinating tornado facts, a chart of the EF scale and what it means, and tornado safety tips. Here’s where you can pick up the paperback or the Kindle version: Shatterproof.

Here are some of the books on which I relied heavily as I did my research for Shatterproof.

  • The Mighty Whirlwind by David Wagler is a warm and friendly account of the Palm Sunday tornadoes of 1965 in northern Indiana. It was published by Pathway Publishers in 1966, and I’m not sure that it is in print anymore judging by the high price I’m finding online. I’m including a link here for you but I would think there are much cheaper ways to get it in your hands. Mighty Whirlwind an Account of the Palm Sunday Tornado
  • And if you are a tornado chasing fanatic, I recommend Tornado Hunter by Bechtel and Samara and published by the National Geographic Society in 2009. Maybe you should just not be a tornado hunter! But if you really want to run toward bad weather instead of away, here you go: Tornado Hunter: Getting Inside the Most Violent Storms on Earth
  • I didn’t use this picture book in my research, but I love picture books! Tornadoes! by Gail Gibbons has great diagrams for children (or adults!) explaining how tornadoes form. It also has illustrations of the best ways to take shelter when a tornado is coming. Sometimes I think a children’s book is an adult’s best short refresher. It’s also cheap! Available here in paperback, hardback, or audio: Tornadoes!

And if you want a really short refresher on tornado safety, come back tomorrow for Tuesday Tips and I will give you a two minute fast refresher on tornado safety.

To enter the drawing for a free signed copy of Shatterproof, leave a comment here on the blog or on Facebook from now until 7 am Tuesday morning, April 30, 2019. Winner will be announced on the Tuesday Tips post.

Have a great start to the week!

I have started something new and included affiliate links in this post. This gives me an opportunity to make a small percentage of any sales from the links I post here, thereby supporting the time I spend writing. Again, I plan to post Merchant Posts only on Mondays, so you always know you can expect the Saturday night post to be commercial-free. 🙂

80 thoughts on “Monday Merchants: Tornado Books and Giveaway”

  1. Thanks for writing!! I always love getting your emails. It’s a brighter in my day. Wishing you God’s richest blessing!

  2. I’d love to read Shatterproof ! Coming from PA we didn’t worry about tornado’s and had one close encounter since we live here ,at the time we had no tornado shelter of any kind and at the worst of the storm were frantically trying to figure out what to do ! Thank God we heard it go over but didn’t touch down .we now have a tornado shelter in our basement !

    1. I would love to read this book. Recently we heard the train sound of a tornado as it it went past us. It was not exciting…more like frightening!

    2. I always look forward to reading your blogs. They’re down to earth n realistic!! Sometimes funny! God bless your writing!!

  3. I love reading your posts, and am intrigued with your tornado writing… as, in fact, I would love to chase tornadoes (I probably don’t know what I’m wishing for… ) My students and I made a joke of it, because they knew that is my dream, but then I told them that I don’t need to go chase tornadoes; I had them as my tornadoes to chase all day! They loved it. 😉

      1. Don’t read many books anymore because of vision difficulties, but I’d love to try! I do LOVE reading your online posts!

  4. I want this book! Shatterproof sounds wonderful. Tornadoes are my most consistent nightmares. I feel helpless and naive concerning tornadoes. In my nightmare I am always desperately trying to get my children to safety, but one or two always slips through my fingers.

    1. I grew up in IL and witnessed an EF 4 tornado from about 5 miles away. They have always fascinated me! While living in VA we didn’t have to worry a lot about them but now that I live in NE, I should likely heighten my awareness and respect for them once more. Would love to read your book!:)

  5. Would love to read Shatterproof! I haven’t ever experienced a tornado but have experienced multiple hurricanes and a serious earthquake.

  6. I remember the Palm Sunday tornadoes. I watched as it dipped down several miles away. Uggh. But what power.

  7. Now that I now longer live in Mississippi I might could handle reading a book about tornadoes.😆

  8. I think it sounds like an interesting book. It is good to be alert to what the weather is doing. We get quite a bit of severe weather here, or maybe I should say quite a few warnings at least.

  9. I don’t know much about tornadoes as we don’t worry about them here in AZ, but I would love to read your book!

    1. As a child tornado warnings always terrified me. That sickening green of the sky made me feel sick inside. One time I had the opportunity to see the funnel forming in the distance – after the storm had already passed over us.

  10. Of course I would love to read Shatterproof. Having been transplanted from the land of tornados to blizzards and finally to the deep south where hurricanes threaten to disturb our peace, I know I would find this inspiring…blessings on your Monday…

  11. I would love to read Shatterproof, especially since we survived a tornado in May 2017 here in Conrath, WI.

  12. Krista Burkholder

    I read the book several years ago but I don’t own a copy. It would be very welcome on my bookshelf!

  13. Excellent immersion reporting in the previous post, Katrina. The human interest part made it especially compelling, and I was so thrilled that the man and his family survived the storm. Thank you for such a satisfying story! 🙂

  14. Christine in Maine

    Excellent immersion reporting in the previous post, Katrina. The human interest part made it especially compelling, and I was so thrilled that the man and his family survived the storm. Thank you for such a satisfying story! 🙂

  15. I’d love to read it. We watched the Imax, I think it was called, Tornado Alley. A replica was there of the TIV that weathered a tornado/s. So fascinating!

  16. I’ve never read this book, and it sounds interesting! Especially since we frequently have tornado warnings.

  17. I haven’t read this book and would enjoy it!! Being very close to a tornado on a family trip added some excitement and trepidation, but I am ok with living in PA where we don’t hear or see them very often.

  18. Who can resist, indeed. I haven’t read this book and my Aunt Lucinda lived through it ( the one at Joplin), so I would find it very interesting. My Aunt lived in a part of town that wasn’t affected much, but they were on the road home and if I remember correctly, the tornado went through before they were back in town, so they didn’t know what they would find when they got home. My family lived in Indiana when the Palm Sunday tornado hit. I would have been 5 years old. Don’t remember it much for some reason. Probably because Mom didn’t get excited (at least on the outside) about storms. I look forward to each of your blogs wondering what you’ll have to write about next.

  19. Thanks for your writings! I’ve seen Shatterproof but have never read it so I’d be happy to have a place in the drawing! God Bless You!

    1. I’ve read Shatterproof several years ago, but don’t own a copy. Living in Mississippi, we’ve had a record breaking number of tornadoes here in the state this year already. Although I grew up here, I never cease to fear them.

  20. I enjoy reading your blogs. You’re an interesting writer, making the simple things in life
    an interesting story.

  21. Bernice Stoltzfus

    Someday I want to read all your books! “Shatterproof” sounds like a good one to read first.

    1. I’ve read Shatterproof several years ago, but don’t own a copy. Living in Mississippi, we’ve had a record breaking number of tornadoes here in the state this year already. Although I grew up here, I never cease to fear them.

  22. Whoa, LOTS of comments already! Like everyone else, I would love to win & read the book!

  23. I read this book when we were in America two years ago. Made me thankful to live in a place with no tornadoes! I did see a funnel cloud once, when I was growing up in Michigan, but it didn’t touch down.

  24. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog since I discovered it. And I’m sure your book would be just as wonderful! Thank you for your refreshing writing! It’s always a pleasure and often a blessing!

  25. We had an F4 tornado come through our community in northern WI in 2017. I and my family were directly hit and it is a terrifying experience! Our church library has a copy (I think they still do; I shall check the next time I am there) and I was always fascinated by that book.

    1. I go shopping in Joplin all the time. I miss some of the stores that were destroyed. I would love to read this book.

  26. We have enjoyed “Rebuilding Hope” that is a CAM book in response to disasters. I don’t think I ever read Shatterproof, but would enjoy it
    One July day, the last one,in 1985 there was a small tornado struck houses just being built just behind us. Frank ran out after it passed by and found a worker with stilts strapped on that had flown across the road. He had been working on finishing drywall. An amazing thing to me was that evening there was a steady flow of traffic back the street which usually had almost no traffic. People were curious!

  27. Sharon Brubacher

    Hi Katrina, Thank you for all of your words . . . I find your blog inspiring, hilarious, and thought provoking, all in turn, and thoroughly enjoy reading it! I first got to know your writing when I read “Blue Christmas”, dear to my heart since serving in Haiti myself. Then I devoured your blog posts about your job as a nurse as I went through nursing school and started my career.
    I would love to read more, and Shatterproof sounds like a touching book, all about people and their stories. I’d love to win it!
    Thanks, Sharon

  28. I go shopping in Joplin all the time. I miss some of the stores that were destroyed. I would love to read this book.

  29. I go shopping in Joplin all the time. I miss some of the stores that were destroyed. I would love to read this book. There are many touching stories.

  30. I’ve read this book but don’t have my own copy. My cousins farm was just hit by a tornado a week ago. The children were in the top of the barn and decided to go down. The last one down was being pulled up but made it to safety just moments before the top of the barn was taken. We thank God for their safety. I’d enjoy reading this book again and my children would enjoy it also.

  31. My children borrowed this book and read it, but if I owned it, maybe I’d get a chance to read it too. Though you don’t have to worry about me running toward tornadoes.
    Gina

    1. Nope, not me either. I have to say that if I saw one from a distance, not moving toward me, I would stop and take a photo. But that’s about it.

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