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Synopsis

A National Book Award finalist for her story collection Who Do You Love, Jean Thompson towers into the stratosphere with her new novel, Wide Blue Yonder.

It is the summer of 1999, and something big and bad is coming to Springfield, Illinois, "the place the Weather lived." Wide Blue Yonder is a novel about weather in all its permutations -- climatic, emotional, even metaphysical. Our guides through this summer of blazing heat and fearsome storms compose an unlikely quartet, each preparing in some measure for the end of the world.

Uncle Harvey believes he is the Weather Channel's "Local Forecast." Yet even an arsenal of meteorological facts and figures can't stanch his existential fears. Harvey's niece, Josie, is fixed with a different predicament. She's seventeen, with nowhere to get to in the Land of Lincoln except into deep trouble. Josie's mother, Elaine, feigns cheerful efficiency, desperately masking a far more urgent quest. And then there's the loner Rolando, who hails from Los Angeles. A human storm system fueled by boundless rage, Rolando is on course to make Springfield the ground zero of his wrath.

Newsweek memorably described Thompson's previous collection, Who Do You Love, as "a beautiful book, but a hell of a sad one." Wide Blue Yonder burns brighter, yet moves in the same mysterious ways.

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