cover image Hurricane City

Hurricane City

Sarah Weeks. HarperCollins Publishers, $15 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-06-021572-9

In the annals of Hurricane City there are hurricanes enough for each letter of the alphabet: Alvin, Zack and everything in between. Clad in shorts and T-shirts, a family accustomed to intemperate weather gives a whistlestop tour of their city's storms. Catchy verse whirls the reader through the hurricanes, big and small (``Sooner or later, / we get them all''), that have descended on this abnormally blustery town: ``Hurricane Laura stole the steeple / And soaked a lot of dressed-up people,'' ``Hurricane Ursula hurried by / And hung the clothesline way up high.'' Action verbs load the rhymes with upbeat energy, while exuberant illustrations ironically offset the humor of the text: e.g., ``she moved the dog house just a touch'' shows dog, kennel and baby sailing over the rooftops. Those who take exception to laughing at natural disasters should bear in mind that first-time author Weeks has earmarked a portion of the royalties for the Salvation Army Hurricane Relief Fund. A well-conceived, fast-paced alphabet book with a twist. Ages 3-6. (May)