F5 | EW.com


It’s April 3, 1974, and America is suffering the worst rash of tornadoes in a century, particularly in Alabama’s Limestone County, the setting for F5, Mark Levine’s crack at writing the next Perfect Storm. He’s got intertwined personal stories, big winds, and a smattering of science, but somehow he misses the drama. From the time-capsule opening (ticking off the hit songs and TV shows of the moment) to the where-are-they-now ending, Levine’s effort falls flat. Weather freaks will find F5 simplistic, disaster hounds will yawn, and no one will see the connections Levine tries to draw between the tornadoes and the stormy political climate of 1974. There’s a good story here, but Levine attempts to squeeze way too much meaning out of one really bad day. C-