When you have nothing else to talk about with someone, you talk about the weather. The joke is supposed to be that it's just small talk. "Sure is sunny today!" "Did you see that rain yesterday?"
Except, is it really that silly? After all, what is more fascinating, more unpredictable, and more relevant to everyone than the weather?
We think that Frankie MacDonald would agree. This amateur Nova Scotia meteorologist is a Canadian YouTube celebrity. His videos forecasting extreme weather across Canada and the world has given his page over 150,000 subscribers.
He has taught himself to read complex satellite radar maps and predict weather patterns like a pro. We could learn a lot from a guy like Frankie. About the weather, sure. But also about life.
And we think that his new book, Be Prepared! The Frankie MacDonald Guide to Life, the Weather, and Everything is the lesson we've all been waiting for!
Weather you know it or not
As you'd expect, Frankie's book is full of awesome facts about the weather. We learned so much about the nature of clouds, lightning, how storms are formed, map reading, and so much more. Frankie and his co-author, Sarah Sawler, take the time to fully explain the basic concepts that make the mystery of weather understandable. You'll never look at a pack of clouds in the sky the same way!
But science facts are only half of this book. Frankie MacDonald's story is also one about overcoming challenges and bullies to realize his dreams. He has autism, a neurological (brain) disorder that affects how a person processes information. Autism doesn't affect intelligence. But it does affect how that person senses things, communicates, forms relationships, and behaves. People with autism are said to be on a spectrum, because every person on that spectrum has similar but different behaviours and symptoms to others on it.
Frankie's achievements have helped to break down prejudice and prove that autistic people are capable of incredible feats. Throughout Be Prepared!, we learn about how he turned his interests and obsessions into a kind of success and fame that no one could've predicted.
And that's what makes this book so great. Part-science guide, part-life guide, it prepares you for a lot more than you might expect.