Most writers entertain the not-so-secret wish that at least portions of their prose will pop and zing with verbal electricity. But it's difficult to construct a hook for your average dysfunctional-family story quite as illuminating as when the author herself, and also several of her characters, have actually been struck by lightning. Richmonder Michele Young-Stone's first novel, “The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors,” published this April by Shaye Areheart Books, a division of Random House, blends both true and fictional accounts of cascading storms of the heart and the sky.
A veritable walking storehouse of lightning-strike facts, myths and cautionary tales, Young-Stone has taken the occasion of her first novel to educate readers about the potentially devastating and often bizarre effects of lightning, but also to revel in its mystery. Death, art, ghosts, love and the search for redemption populate her pages as frequently as the ominous rumble of thunder.
Meet the author, Michele Young Stone, at her book launch party, Lightning Strikes Twice for a Local Author! sponsored by Chop Suey Books on April 18 from 5-7 p.m. at Gallery5 at 200 W. Marshall St. and at a reading at Fountain Bookstore at 1312 E. Cary St. on April 20 at 6:30 p.m. Visit micheleyoung-stone.com for upcoming schedules and events.