I often get the most interesting questions from my readers, the most popular one is: Did that really happen?
My response, it depends on which event it is ;) I'm very cheeky with my answers and I do want to keep you on your toes. Curiosity is a great motivator to find out what happens next. And yes, some of those lingering questions from Sway are indeed answered in Compass and Destiny, much will be revealed.
For the most part, over 65% of it is true. Some scenes have obviously been expanded. Here's a hint: the tornado is indeed true, it's a combination of my brother's experience and mine plus my imagination. My brother's school took the brunt of the hit while my school was further away which was on the edge of the storm - it was still a devastating event that left a lasting impression. One thing I need to mention is that disasters are the worst thing to happen to someone that is hard of hearing or deaf. We often get lost in the chaos of what's happening around us, we can't hear announcements, and if we are suddenly plunged into darkness, it's impossible to understand anything much less follow instructions. The roar of the storm and murky hallways was a nightmare for me and I felt that this was a necessary component to include in the story to demonstrate how easy it is for someone with a disability to be left in the dark during an horrifying situation.
By the way, like in real life, some of those questions didn't get resolved until twenty years later. Those ones will remain hidden in the books. Some clues will be dropped in the third book which will have an impact on Jessie's life in the future ;)
Many aspects of my life have been incorporated into the series, that's part of my personality you're holding in your hands. It's essentially a glimmer into my mind. When you read Sway, Compass, and Destiny, that's my world you're living in and my footsteps you're following.