30-year-old Bronwyn Artair, feeling out of place in her doctoral program in Atmospheric Sciences at MIT, drops out and takes a job as a TV meteorologist, much to the dismay of her mentor, Diane Fenwick. After a year of living alone in Southern New Hampshire, enduring the indignities of her job, dumped by her boyfriend, she discovers her deep connection to the natural world has given her an ability to affect natural forces. When she finally accepts she really possesses this startling capability, she must then negotiate a new relationship to the world. Who will she tell? Who will believe her? Most importantly, how will she put this new skill of hers to use? As she seeks answers to these questions, she travels to Kansas to see the tornado maverick she worships; falls in love with Matt, the tabloid journalist who has come to investigate her; visits fires raging out of control in Los Angeles; and eventually voyages with Matt and Diane to the methane fields of Siberia. A woman experiencing power for the first time in her life, she must figure out what she can do for the world without hurting it further. The story poses questions about science and intuition, women and power, and what the earth needs from humans.
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About the Author
Artists & Climate Change Interview
Andy Davis from Eco-Fiction recently interviewed Cai Emmons author of Weather Woman. Davis asks Emmons about her inspirations and knowledge needed to write about the character in the story. Davis also asks about Emmons' writing process; you can read about that and the rest of the interview here. Eco-Fiction Interview
ForeWord Interview with Cai Emmons and Tammy Lynne Stoner
Burning Worlds Interview
Book Club Babble Interview
Five Questions with Cai Emmons Interview--Interviews
Since I began devising a playlist for Weather Woman, I have not been able to stop. I hear threads of relevance everywhere. The 20 tracks I have finally settled on speak to me in different ways, some primarily for the thematic content of their lyrics, some for their driving rhythms, some for their intense longing.
--Cai Emmons on her playlist for Weather Woman
Article about 6 books with female leads with superpowers (including Weather Woman)
--Cai Emmons for Electric Literature
Author is featured in two Staff Top Picks Lists compiled by Eugene Weekly. https: //www.eugeneweekly.com/2018/12/13/winter-reading-top-ten-lists/--author comments/articles
Her ability to create vivid scenes is notable in "Weather Woman," and it's easy to imagine this story becoming a motion picture...Who among us hasn't thrown up a prayer or plea to stop lightning, or to summon rain? I wanted to believe, and so I did, at least for the time I lived within the novel.
--Alice Evans, Oregon Live
"Thirty-year-old Bronwyn Artair, feeling out of place in her doctoral program in Atmospheric Sciences at MIT, drops out and takes a job as a TV meteorologist, much to the dismay of her mentor, Diane Fenwick. After a year of living alone in Southern New Hampshire, enduring the indignities of her job, dumped by her boyfriend, she discovers her deep connection to the natural world has given her an ability to affect natural forces. When she finally accepts she really possesses this startling capability, she must then negotiate a new relationship to the world. Who will she tell? Who will believe her? Most importantly, how will she put this new skill of hers to use?"
--The Rumpus, "What to Read When the World Is Ending"
Climate change gets plenty of news coverage these days, and speculative fiction has long been a place to find stories set amid harrowing, post-apocalyptic worlds destroyed by global warming. But it is rarer to find a work of fiction set in the present-day that focuses on the current state of natural affairs. On November 13, Red Hen Press will release Weather Woman, the ambitious third novel by Oregon-based author Cai Emmons, which takes a nuanced, disturbing view of one of the most pressing issues of our time.
--The Rumpus, "Part Skeptic, Part Believer. A Conversation with Cai Emmons"
Bronwyn's early life was not easy, but she always found refuge in considering the sky. This fascination with the undulations of weather systems and clouds led her to higher education at MIT, where she studied atmospheric science--until her more blue blood colleagues chased her out. As a meteorologist in New Hampshire who's constantly disappointed with herself, she really does not expect a second act. And then she changes the weather. And in changing the weather once, discovers that she can do it again, with more and more specificity. Bronwyn sets her sights on combating climate change in this continually surprising tale.
Though clearly immersed in a thoughtful concern for our world, Weather Woman finds exactly the right balance by tipping towards the individual human concerns and passions that make a compelling story. Recommended.
--KLCC Radio Interview
Interview on Give and Take Podcast, Ep 126
"First Draft" Interview at Aspen Public Radio
"Writers' Voices" Interview at Iowa Public Radio
"Write the Book" Interview at Vermont Public Radio
"Performance Today" Interview at Montana Public Radio
"The Write Question" Interview with PRX
To say I loved Weather Woman is an understatement. Full of amazing science, and even more amazing characters, it's the kind of book you want to press into the hands of everyone you meet because you need them to read it so you all can obsess and talk about it.
--Caroline Leavitt, author of the New York Times bestselling Pictures of You
A riveting tug-of-war between science and intuition, doubt and belief, impending devastation and the hope of survival. Even the most rational among us will find wisdom here, wonder, and truth.
--Eileen Pollack, author of A Perfect Life
Bronwyn, the central character in Cai Emmons' novel Weather Woman, comes face-to-face with extreme weather, fire, ice, and the complex social psychology of climate change discourse. As a TV meteorologist she is pressed to lighten up and spin the weather in feel-good ways, reflecting the mainstream media's tendency to deny the inconvenient challenge of climate change. The Siberian tundra is brought suspensefully into focus, and throughout the novel the writing allows us to feel the emotional intensity that comes with connecting with the wild power of nature. It's a welcome feeling in a world being increasingly held captive by climate change. Oh, how I have sometimes wished that I could control the weather! Think of the good I might do by intervening in human-driven climate change.
--Jason Box, glaciologist and climatologist, dubbed "The Ice Maverick" by Rolling Stone
Weather Woman tells the utterly absorbing story of a failed graduate student who goes from reporting the weather - she's a singing meterologist - to having a much more complicated relationship with it. As Bronwyn gradually discovers her powers, she also struggles to use them responsibly. In doing so, she finds herself arguing with sceptics and believers alike. Cai Emmons has written a deeply fascinating and extremely timely novel.
Weather Woman is an extraordinary novel that reveals the complicated social psychology of climate change discourse. Cai Emmons took the time to discuss the challenges she faced while writing this book, her views on the role literature plays in raising awareness about climate action, and what she hopes her readers will do to actively fight the permanent, ongoing, and inescapable environmental crises facing us all.
Young Bronwyn Artair is a reluctant doctoral student in the atmospheric-sciences department at MIT. Despite reassurances from her mentor and adviser, Diane Fenwick, Bronwyn is convinced she is not cut out for graduate school and decides to become a meteorologist instead. Soon, however, Bronwyn discovers that she can do more than just report the weather: she can actually change it. As global warming threatens the world, such a person would be valuable currency, but Bronwyn must first learn to wield her powers safely and, second, convince skeptical scientists to believe her. Emmons paints a convincing portrait of a young woman on the cusp of self-discovery.
-- Poornima Apte