Catastrophic climate change seems all too real through the eyes of a Florida girl.


Climate apocalypse is the setting for a formidable young woman’s coming-of-age.

Kirby Lowe is a lineman for the utility company in the small town of Rudder in southeast Florida. With a huge hurricane heading in, he’s called to work before it arrives. He hates leaving his pregnant wife and his two young sons at home, but they’re prepared, or so they think. The first part of this novel is a harrowing description of that storm and the destruction it wreaks; the second part picks up 10 years later with Kirby and his surviving family: grown son Lucas and 10-year-old daughter Wanda, named for the hurricane during which she was born. In a convincingly portrayed near-future Florida, climate change has accelerated. The hurricanes come faster and fiercer, and the barrier island communities are already slipping under the sea. Kirby and Lucas, now also a lineman, have so much work that Wanda is often on her own, and her adventurous streak worries her father. He finds her an after-school caretaker, a retired biology professor named Phyllis, who turns out to be the perfect choice. Soon the pair are conducting field studies of the local flora and fauna, and Phyllis, who as a biologist and former park ranger has seen climate disaster coming for years, starts teaching the girl how to grow a garden, keep chickens, forage, and use other survival skills. As Wanda grows up, the waters rise higher and the summers blaze hotter, and climate refugees begin to flee the state. Before long, mostly depopulated towns shut down, then even big cities are abandoned. “Eventually,” the author writes, “the federal government announced the widespread closure of Florida as a whole, as if it were a rundown theme park with a roller coaster that was no longer safe to ride.” Those who remain—Wanda and Phyllis among them—are on their own. Brooks-Dalton creates an all-too-believable picture of nature reclaiming Florida from its human inhabitants, and her complex and engaging characters make climate disaster a vividly individual experience rather than an abstract subject of debate.

Catastrophic climate change seems all too real through the eyes of a Florida girl.

Pub Date: Dec. 6, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-5387-0827-9

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

Review Posted Online: Sept. 28, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2022

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Through palpable tension balanced with glimmers of hope, Hoover beautifully captures the heartbreak and joy of starting over.

Reader Votes

  • Readers Vote
  • 50

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • New York Times Bestseller


The sequel to It Ends With Us (2016) shows the aftermath of domestic violence through the eyes of a single mother.

Lily Bloom is still running a flower shop; her abusive ex-husband, Ryle Kincaid, is still a surgeon. But now they’re co-parenting a daughter, Emerson, who's almost a year old. Lily won’t send Emerson to her father’s house overnight until she’s old enough to talk—“So she can tell me if something happens”—but she doesn’t want to fight for full custody lest it become an expensive legal drama or, worse, a physical fight. When Lily runs into Atlas Corrigan, a childhood friend who also came from an abusive family, she hopes their friendship can blossom into love. (For new readers, their history unfolds in heartfelt diary entries that Lily addresses to Finding Nemo star Ellen DeGeneres as she considers how Atlas was a calming presence during her turbulent childhood.) Atlas, who is single and running a restaurant, feels the same way. But even though she’s divorced, Lily isn’t exactly free. Behind Ryle’s veneer of civility are his jealousy and resentment. Lily has to plan her dates carefully to avoid a confrontation. Meanwhile, Atlas’ mother returns with shocking news. In between, Lily and Atlas steal away for romantic moments that are even sweeter for their authenticity as Lily struggles with child care, breastfeeding, and running a business while trying to find time for herself.

Through palpable tension balanced with glimmers of hope, Hoover beautifully captures the heartbreak and joy of starting over.

Pub Date: Oct. 18, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-668-00122-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Atria

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2022

Did you like this book?


The years pass by at a fast and steamy clip in Blume’s latest adult novel (Wifey, not reviewed; Smart Women, 1984) as two friends find loyalties and affections tested as they grow into young women. In sixth grade, when Victoria Weaver is asked by new girl Caitlin Somers to spend the summer with her on Martha’s Vineyard, her life changes forever. Victoria, or more commonly Vix, lives in a small house; her brother has muscular dystrophy; her mother is unhappy, and money is scarce. Caitlin, on the other hand, lives part of the year with her wealthy mother Phoebe, who’s just moved to Albuquerque, and summers with her father Lamb, equally affluent, on the Vineyard. The story of how this casual invitation turns the two girls into what they call "Summer sisters" is prefaced with a prologue in which Vix is asked by Caitlin to be her matron of honor. The years in between are related in brief segments by numerous characters, but mostly by Vix. Caitlin, determined never to be ordinary, is always testing the limits, and in adolescence falls hard for Von, an older construction worker, while Vix falls for his friend Bru. Blume knows the way kids and teens speak, but her two female leads are less credible as they reach adulthood. After high school, Caitlin travels the world and can’t understand why Vix, by now at Harvard on a scholarship and determined to have a better life than her mother has had, won’t drop out and join her. Though the wedding briefly revives Vix’s old feelings for Bru, whom Caitlin is marrying, Vix is soon in love with Gus, another old summer friend, and a more compatible match. But Caitlin, whose own demons have been hinted at, will not be so lucky. The dark and light sides of friendship breathlessly explored in a novel best saved for summer beachside reading.

Pub Date: May 8, 1998

ISBN: 0-385-32405-7

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 1998

Did you like this book?