This is a readable and ultimately sweetly uplifting story of two American tragedies, one sudden, the other slow and ongoing. The first is the flooding of New Orleans associated with Hurricane Katrina, but caused by government ineptitude at the federal, state, and local levels. The second is the slow and calculated removal of land from its historical African-American owners in the rural South over the past 150 years. Both stories are told with gusto and verve from the point of view of Simon and Julian Fortier, father and son rooted in New Orleans and the Louisiana delta. Story's narrative has wonderful references and evocations of the food and music of South Louisiana, which in the humble opinion of this Northern California native, is the best in the world.