Luke Riley is lost.
His mother’s recent death has set Luke and his family adrift. Even though his father, twin brothers, and their three bloodhounds are search-and-rescue volunteers, they have been unable to rescue themselves and become a family again. The summer after sixth grade looms in Luke’s mind as a long, lonely three months where the only thing he can look forward to is watching the Weather Channel. Luke is fascinated with the weather, but since his mother’s death in a storm, he is also terrified. Even the promised thirteenth birthday present of a bloodhound puppy fails to lift Luke’s spirits. He would rather have a different breed – a petite papillon – but his father insists he get a bloodhound. Luke works out a deal with Willajean, the dog breeder who owns Storm Watcher Kennel, to help her in exchange for the expensive dog. Thrilled to have a summer with a purpose, Luke befriends Willajean’s daughter, Megan, and together they plan how to get Luke a papillon puppy instead of a bloodhound. But things go wrong, and they struggle with stubborn fathers, summer storms, unhelpful siblings, and hidden guilt. “STORM WATCHER is a brilliant and beautiful tale of how the simple, honest love of a dog can help a lonely boy find his way out of the darkness. Subtle, powerful and highly recommended.” ~ Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of FIRE & ASH and ROT & RUIN "Best-selling author Maria V. Snyder’s debut novel for young readers, Storm Watcher, is a thrilling, heart-warming canine caper. Thirteen-year-old Luke loves dogs and is fascinated with weather data—but storms terrify him. With lightning quick action, humor, and lots of dogs, Storm Watcher will delight readers. Also the scientific and math insights into weather will appeal to educators and inspire readers to create their own weather science projects. Highly recommended! ~ Linda Joy Singleton, author of THE SEER and DEAD GIRL series "Snyder's lightning strikes again with STORM WATCHER's tale of ordinary people fighting to become heroes in the face of things they fear most. Luke's story is by turns funny, touching, and achingly real, as Snyder harnesses a lifetime of expertise about meteorology, dogs, and life in small towns." ~ Morgan Keyes, author of the Darkbeast series "This deftly plotted story will engage readers of both genders with its fresh storyline....Intertwining family relationships, weather science and search-and-rescue dog training, this coming-of-age story relays themes of friendship, grief, challenge, fear and responsibility without didacticism or melodrama....A welcome addition to the middle-grade library." ~Kirkus "There is always room on the shelf for another exciting boy-and-his-dog story, and this readable contemporary novel will appeal especially to youngsters interested in search-and-rescue training or meteorology." ~School Library Journal **Honored to be a 2014 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award™ Nominee**