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“Tornado,” the latest in a series of National Geographic Kids’ books by husband-and-wife writing team Dennis and Judy Fradin, was in the works long before the cycle of deadly storms began to tear across the southern part of the country. Published just a few weeks ago, the book tells “the story behind these twisting, turning, spilling and spiraling storms.”
The four main sections of the book deal with the tornado that struck Greensburg, Kan., on May 4, 2004 (“An Emergency Situation”), tornado science (“Nature’s Most Violent Storms”), true stories of deadly twisters (“Killer Tornadoes”) and twister prediction (“How We Know They’re Coming”). There are also messages from scientists, survivors and witnesses.
Ms. Fradin said she and Mr. Fradin decided not to emphasize tornado chasers because of the danger involved. They did not wish to encourage youngsters to chase after storms in an effort to see or photograph them.
“This is a children’s book, and every kid has a camera,” she said.
This is a book designed to hold children’s interest, with dramatic photos of storms and their aftermath, tidbits of information that seem to have survived them: reprints of newspaper headlines, scraps of paper tacked to a weather-beaten board or posted with colored round magnets with a tornado drawn on them.
“Tornado” is one of seven National Geographic children’s books by Judy and Dennis Fradin.