Review: We Are Still Tornadoes by Michael Kun and Susan Mullen @StMartinsPress @SMullenCoAuthor

Release date: November 1, 2016

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Genre: Young Adult

Goodreads blurb: 

Growing up across the street from each other, Scott and Cath have been best friends their entire lives. Cath would help Scott with his English homework, he would make her mix tapes (it’s the 80’s after all), and any fight they had would be forgotten over TV and cookies. But now they’ve graduated high school and Cath is off to college while Scott is at home pursuing his musical dreams.

During their first year apart, Scott and Cath’s letters help them understand heartache, annoying roommates, family drama and the pressure to figure out what to do with the rest of their lives. And through it all, they realize that the only person they want to turn to is each other. But does that mean they should be more than friends? The only thing that’s clear is that change is an inescapable part of growing up. And the friends who help us navigate it share an unshakable bond.

This funny yet deeply moving book–set to an awesome 80’s soundtrack–captures all the beautiful confusion and emotional intensity we find on the verge of adulthood…and first love. 


What a fun read! I absolutely adore epistolary books and I haven’t read one for ages. Epistolary is just a fancy word that means it’s told through letters, emails or some sort of correspondence. This was a totally delightful read that I devoured in an afternoon and I think it will be very appealing for YA readers.

Cath and Scott have lived across the street from each other their whole lives and are the best of friends. Their relationship was so endearing, sweet, and hilarious! Their wicked banter was sharp and witty and it made me long for the days of my own youth. The book starts when Cath is beginning her freshman year at college and Scott is staying at home and working with his father in his clothing store.

It’s set in 1982/1983 and there were some really great references to the music of that era. I loved hearing them write about things like Michael Jackson’s new album, Thriller with his hot new song Billie Jean. The nostalgia was so strong, and even if you’re not a child of the eighties I have no doubt that you’ll catch some of the references anyway. Even the fact that the two were exchanging actual letters and phone calls from a landline, was so sweet and gave a nod to a simpler time. Though much has changed since the eighties, Cath and Scott’s adolescent struggles are still wholly relatable today.

The style makes it easy to finish this one quickly and even though I did just that, I was still very involved and connected to both Cath and Scott. Over the course of this year in their lives they deal with divorce, death, first love, and being away from home for the first time. As they both struggled in different ways, they always had each other to lean on. They were so cute and lovable and their friendship was just lovely.

This was so fresh and charming, filled with heart and humor, and though I think it’s simply perfect for the YA crowd, this thirty five year old loved it as well. My only small complaint is with the ending, it just seemed a bit rushed, but with the direction that it took, I completely understood why it ended in this manner. Just wanted to give a little warning about that part because I know some readers get irritated with abrupt endings. Please don’t let that stop you from picking this one up though, it was still very much worth the read. 

Overall rating: 4/5

Huge thanks to Jessica at St. Martin’s Press for my review copy.

28 thoughts on “Review: We Are Still Tornadoes by Michael Kun and Susan Mullen @StMartinsPress @SMullenCoAuthor

  1. Melissa @ BookNerdMomo says:

    I’ve had my eye on this one for a while and have been waiting to see a review. I’m so glad you enjoyed it and I’ll have to pick it up at some point. I remember we talked about epistolary type books a while back. I’ve read so few in that format but have loved each of them. It definitely makes for a quicker read. Great review, Amy! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Anne says:

    You had me at “It’s set in 1982/1983”. I think my next year’s reading will consist of so many books set in the ’80’s xD. But I can’t help it! Nostalgia indeed! St. Martin’s press is seriously my new favourite publisher. Also because they approved all of my requests so far ;).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Susie | Novel Visits says:

    I don’t usually go for YA style books, but your review has me interested in this one. I especially like the 80’s era setting and the style of being told through letter, emails, etc. I may need to We Are Still Tornadoes a spin!

    Liked by 1 person

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