Red River Raging

Red River RagingBy Penny Draper

Thirteen-year-old Finn Armstrong is a world traveler.  With a home base in Vancouver, Finn accompanies his parents on their international research trips.  This year he was supposed to go to Egypt, but instead he’s been sent to St. Agathe, Manitoba to stay with his grandmother and great-grandfather, known simply as Armstrong.

Finn is not too thrilled about moving to a town where nothing happens, but he starts to feel better when he begins making friends.  Finn soon learns the ways of prairie life: he goes skating at the Forks, a trail system on the frozen Red River, plays Cribbage with Armstrong and even tries ice fishing. 

Finn also learns that the Red River floods every year, but that a dyke system has been built to protect the towns and cities along its banks, including Winnipeg.  But when all the signs start pointing toward a major flood, Finn decides that he will step up to help save the prairie residents and their homes.

Sandbagging, building dykes, working in standing water and wearing gumboots all become second nature to Finn.  In fact, he and his friends start a Flood Club and recruit their classmates to travel wherever they are needed to help out.  It’s actually a lot of fun.

But when the river really starts flooding, everyone in town watches with baited breath as the flood moves north along the river.  Each day it passes through a new town, starting in the United States and continuing up into Canada.  In some towns, the dykes hold and the town is safe.  In others, homes and businesses end up under water, families must be saved from rooftops, and people’s lives are turned upside down.

Based on true events, Red River Raging is the story of the Red River flood of 1997.  Penny Draper’s Disaster Strikes series deals with real Canadian disasters.  If you like historical fiction or a good disaster story, this series is for you!