Sophie Washington: Hurricane by Tonya Duncan Ellis



#Sophie Strong

9FA8C672-B55E-415B-B14F-C5E5423BA4BB.jpegA hurricane’s coming, and eleven-year-old Sophie Washington’s typical middle school life in the Houston, Texas suburbs is about to make a major change. One day she’s teasing her little brother, Cole, dodging classmate Nathan Jones’ wayward science lab frog and complaining about “braggamuffin” cheerleader Valentina Martinez, and the next, she and her family are fleeing for their lives to avoid dangerous flood waters. Finding a place to stay isn’t easy during the disaster, and the Washington’s get some surprise visitors when they finally do locate shelter. To add to the trouble, three members of the Washington family go missing during the storm, and new friends lose their home. In the middle of it all, Sophie learns to be grateful for what she has and that she is stronger than she ever imagined.



“Ahhhhhowwwww!!!” my little brother Cole’s screams combine with our dog Bertram’s howls, as a blinding light flashes near the backyard. The hair on my arms stands on end. We zoom to the kitchen race car fast.

“Mooom!” I call.

Thunder booms. I cover my ears to stop the ringing. My mother, wild-eyed, joins us.

“It’s lightning!” she cries, pulling Cole and me in for a group hug; Bertram shivers in the middle.

Outside, rain pounds down in sheets. The power cuts off.

“Great,” says mom, as she stumbles through the blackness to the pantry to find candles and a lighter.

For about three minutes, we huddle together quietly in the dimly lit room.

“What do we do now?” Cole breaks the silence.

He edges way too close to me, and I have the urge to shove him off like I usually do, but I feel sorry for my little brother because if I’m scared, I’m sure he’s terrified.


“Ewwwww! You are so nasty, Cole!” Now I do push my little brother back. Leave it to him break wind at a time like this.

“Excuse me,” he says.

My mother starts giggling.

“I can’t believe you’re laughing, Mom!” Pinching my nose, at the sulfurous odor I stamp my feet.

The lights flick back on, and I squinch. Bertram barks and wags his tail happily.

I exhale, then sharply breathe back in a few seconds later, when we hear a clatter coming from the garage.

“Wait here, kids,” our mother cautiously moves toward the door that leads outside.

“Be careful,” I warn.




This is the cutest book and it is so well written for girls in the sweet ages of 7-12, just before the teenager phase hits. The author includes a lot of fun and laughter in this book that captures the hearts and minds of children this age. She also deals with some real life situations that this age will more than likely have to face. Sophie’s family had to relocate very fast because of an ongoing hurricane, and the vivid details of this time in Sophie’s life may help someone else one day. The author also deals with friendships-the goods and the not so goods, cultural issues that are so real today, immigration and with issues faces with people here. And I appreciate that Ms. Ellis writes all of this through the eyes and mind of Sophie, so that other pre-teen girls can associate with what is going on. The natural disaster that happened, the hurricane was an eye openers for everyone, seeing first had what happens to families.

Overall I really like this book and I encourage others with young girls to pick up a copy of this book. And I haven’t read the others in this series, but by the covers, they look to be just as fun and entertaining! I received this book from ……… to read and review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 55.




Tonya Duncan Ellis is the author of the Readers’ Favorite “Five Star” rated Sophie Washington children’s books series, geared toward readers ages 8 to 12, and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She has received awards for literary excellence and worked as a journalist and freelance magazine writer.

The Sophie Washington book series recounts the adventures of a precocious African American preteen from Houston, TX and her diverse group of friends. Each funny and heartwarming story teaches lessons about friendship, responsibility, truthfulness and perseverance. Books in the series include Queen of the Bee, The Snitch, Things You Didn’t Know About Sophie, The Gamer, Hurricane, and Mission: Costa Rica.

Tonya lives in Houston, TX. When she’s not writing, the author enjoys reading, biking, swimming, travel and spending time with her husband and three children.

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