|Torn Apart is the middle book in Sala's Storm Front series. Set in Bordelaise, Louisiana, it focuses on a twister that has touched down on a summer Sunday. A family who was killed was the subject of the first novel Blown Away. Torn Apart chronicles the woes of J. R. Earle, his wife Katie and their small son Bobby. Bobby has disappeared in the twister and his body has not been found.
Prior to the twister, J.R. had received a promotion which required a relocation to New Orleans. Excited for his future and his family, he purchased a home there and then confronted Katie with the fait accompli. Psychologically terrified to move from what was a safe and comfortable existence in Bordelaise, Katie refused to relocate and it had evolved into a separation with extensive visitation rights to J.R.
Immediately upon Bobby's disappearance Katie calls J.R to tell him, but she can’t locate him and, after repeated calls to his office, has not heard from him. The police begin to suspect that J.R. has disappeared with Bobby.
Off the coast of New Orleans, J.R. has been marooned on an oil rig in the storm. The helicopter which should have rescued them had gone down in the Gulf and they are forced to ride the storm out. When eventually he connects with Katie, he speeds to Bordelaise to find his son.
Torn Apart has a better plot structure with a wider scope of characters than Blown Away. As a result of revelations from one of Bobby's friends, it becomes obvious that Bobby has been abducted, not killed as they feared by the twister. Thus starts the search for the Bobby and Katie's growing realization that she has been wrong in refusing to move. It is almost academic since her home is destroyed by the twister as well.
The search takes on a momentum of its own when Katie realizes that the bad man Bobby has been afraid of in Bordelaise may not have been a figment of his imagination. Sharon Sala excels at character development and keeps reader interest by her well paced mounting tensions. Although the ending is predictable, it is the journey that the reader signs on to take.