When Emilia de Wit ran away to New York City, she planned everything to a T. Plane ticket, purchased. Cute apartment, rented online. Subway map, printed and highlighted. This was no ordinary trip -- this was Emilia's declaration of independence. Her chance to escape the disaster her life has become. To get away from the horrible scandal that has rocked Amsterdam, the scandal that is all her dad's fault. To see if her mom, the glamorous, world-famous artist, will even notice.New York steals Emilia's heart at first sight -- even though absolutely nothing goes to plan. She didn't plan to end up homeless on a stranger's doorstep. She didn't plan to make friends with Seth, Abby, and Jim. And she could never have known that Hurricane Sandy would be barreling up the coast, straight for the city.All she wanted was to get away from her parents, her problems, her life... but when the storm hits and the power goes out, Emilia feels farther from home than she could have imagined.
About the Author
Anna Woltz was living in New York when Hurricane Sandy hit the city in 2012. She spent the days afterward wandering through lower Manhattan, searching for warmth, food, and electrical outlets. When the lights came back on, she began writing A Hundred Hours of Night. Anna now lives in Utrecht, the Netherlands.
Read an Excerpt
The voices on the TV get louder and shriller. The waiting's over. The hurricane's right above our heads now. In the borough of Queens, some way to the east of where we are, the first death has occurred: A tree crushed a house, along with the man inside. I actually gasp. "The first death" -- as if they're sure there'll be more.Then the light flickers again.For two seconds, it's dark. The TV screen goes black and the computer switches itself off.My heart seems to stop along with them.And then suddenly the lights are back on, nice and steady, with no flickering at all."This is kind of eerie," says Jim."But I don't understand how it's happening," Abby squeaks. "The way the power's going off, and then back on again. That means it must be okay. It can't actually be, like, really broken, can it? But then why were the lights flickering? I don't get it."As Seth turns the computer and the TV back on, we listen to Hurricane Sandy howling. She pulls on the walls and thumps at the windows. The rain beats hard against the glass as the TV shows us that more and more parts of the city are now under water. I hear a crash outside and, moments later, the wail of a siren.I move closer to Abby and look up at the lamp above the counter. Suddenly, I can't breathe. The lamp -- it's one of those glass shades on a long cord -- is slowly swinging back and forth.That's impossible, I tell myself. The wind isn't blowing inside the building. The door's locked, and all the windows are closed. So how come the lamp's swaying? And then I realize.It's not the lamp that's moving. It's the building.The lamp is hanging perfectly still above the counter, but our building is gently moving.I want to point and scream that bricks and concrete aren't allowed to sway in the wind, but I can't make a sound. All the noise in the world belongs to Sandy right now.And then, without any warning, without a bang, without a flicker, everything goes dark.And it stays dark.