133 of 160 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Factual Evidence is Devastating
OK, I'm a lifelong Republican. And for the longest time I resisted the 'global warming' stuff as "hogwash" as Rush says. But for the first time, the actual facts in this book changed my mind. I'm somewhat embarrassed by the overwhelming evidence submitted by Gore, but hey, when you're right, you're right. Congratulations, you've got to hand it to someone who sticks with...
Published on June 1, 2006 by True Hawk Patriot
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but not complete
I purchased this book despite my skepticism on human caused global warming. I figure i need to know both sides of the argument before I formulate an opinion.
There were some great points made in the book and despite my belief that global warming is not entirely human caused, there are a lot of things where I said "ya, why not? Wouldn't hurt to reduce this or...
Published on May 20, 2008 by J. Martens
Most Helpful First | Newest First
133 of 160 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Factual Evidence is Devastating,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It (Paperback)OK, I'm a lifelong Republican. And for the longest time I resisted the 'global warming' stuff as "hogwash" as Rush says. But for the first time, the actual facts in this book changed my mind. I'm somewhat embarrassed by the overwhelming evidence submitted by Gore, but hey, when you're right, you're right. Congratulations, you've got to hand it to someone who sticks with an issue until the truth comes out.
62 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Climate Change Starter Book Yet,
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It (Paperback)I am a layman who loves to read books about science. To me politics has no business mucking around in science. I simply want to know what research is being done in a field, and what the general scientific consensus is about a given topic.
Al Gore's book is an excellent starting point for those who want to learn some of the basics of global warming, but are reluctant to leap into a more academic book on the subject. Although I have read several books on this topic I was interested to see what Al Gore had to say about it. When I got my copy my first reaction was "Oh no, this is just a simple minded picture book." I was mistaken. Pictures are worth a thousand words. We are presented with photos of glaciers taken now, and in the past. The change is startling. Or the satellite photos of Lake Chad, which used to be the size of Lake Erie, but has almost totally dried up in just 40 years.. He tells us about those cute penguins we saw in the movie "March of the Penguins": 70% of them are now gone. They can't find enough hard ice to raise their offspring. The statistics he presents in many graphs are quite frightening. Sample: in the 1950s there were about 10 floods in the U.S.; In the 1990s there were close to 200.
Some readers who want to learn about global warming, but who are not fans of Mr. Gore might tire of the several biographical segments added to the book. Whatever your feelings are about him, you have to admire the amount of traveling he did to seek out answers. He's gone through all the continents - traveled up the Amazon, been to both Antarctica and the North Pole (both on top of it, and under it in a submarine).
Mind you, this book will not take you a long distance into the topic. It is an introduction, and if the material presented intrigues you, then you should take the next step and read some more books on the subject such as:
The Discovery of Global Warming by Spencer Weart (a history of global warming research)
Field Notes from a Catastrophe by Elizabeth Kolbert (easy reading)
Red Sky At Morning by James Speth (how do we address the problem)
Is The Temperature Rising, by George Philander (a little more technical)
The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery (easy reading)
Climate Change by William Burroughs (quite technical)
The Ice Chronicles by Paul Mayewski (about the ice cores that tell us about past climate)
High Tide by Mark Lynas (how global warming is already affecting people)
The Long Summer by Brian Fagan (climate change through the history of civilization)
Atmosphere, Climate and Change by Thomas Graedel (somewhat technical but accessible)
103 of 129 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pay attention to who attacks this book,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It (Paperback)If you read the customer reviews of this book closely, you'll notice two things:
1. The majority of the one and two star reviews are written by people who apparently haven't read the book or seen the movie and are just using this space to promote their own, or somebody else's, book.
2. These same people, many of whom describe An Inconvenient Truth as "political propaganda," are also overwhelmingly promoting a right wing political agenda that has NOTHING to do with mainsteam science.
As both the book and the movie point out in careful detail, over 900 peer-reviewed, independent, international scientific studies have all reached the same conclusion: Global warming is real, it is being exacerbated by the burning of fossil fuels, and it constitutes a clear and present danger to human health and safety and the global economy.
It's time for America to stop shirking its responsibility as the dominant superpower in the face of a global climate crisis. We need more leaders like the former vice president with the guts to challenge American business and technology to come up with job-creating innovations that will help reduce CO2 emissions so our children can inherit a planet that is as habitable as the one we were born to.
Let's show the world America hasn't lost its can-do spirit!
43 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a Must Read. Democrat or Republican...keep an open mind!,
38 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book and movie! See the movie or read the book!,
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Biggest Environmental Issue of the Century,
This review is from: An Inconvenient Truth : The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do about It (Paperback)Global warming is, and will certainly continue to be, by far the most pressing environmental issue for the next hundred years. Al Gore's book spells out all the major issues marvelously. As a high school science teacher I'm considering making sections of it mandatory for my environmental science students. It's science fact that no one should miss.
Some of the biggest problems people have when confronting this book is not their disbelief in global warming. Virtually every credible scientist in the world has by this point accepted not only the fact that the Earth is warming, but that it is doing so because of excessive greenhouse gas emissions. The remaining dissenters in the scientific community are almost invariably linked to big oil companies (e.g. Exxon Mobile hires some morally bankrupt scientists to point out the "inconsistency of data" or some minor point that scientists disagree on as proof that global warming is not occuring. Then the scientist publishes a paper, refuses to allow it to be peer reviewed by other scientists, and Exxon lives to fight another day.) Even the critics of the warming theory who are not scientists (like the organization which made the cartoon spoof of Gore's movie under the pretense of being some college kid, but actually had ties to several petroleum companies) have no real scientific basis. So no, MOST people's problem is not with the theory, but with the man who wrote the book: Al Gore. To those people, maybe I can offer some help. As a moderate republican I can feel your pain, but consider these points before blasting the book:
- Try to separate Al Gore the politician with Al Gore the writer. You may not agree with the democratic party's platform on immigration or the war in Iraq, but this has nothing to do with that. Focus on the issue at hand.
- If you can't get beyond the whole "I invented the internet" thing, maybe this is consolation: Gore's book is not original research. He is not really a scientist, so you needn't worry that he doesn't know what he's doing. Think of him more as a reporter who is using his celebrity to tell the world what the VAST majority of scientists are saying about global warming.
- And finally, if you still hate Gore and think global warming is complete liberal hippy propaganda, at least by reading the book you have something to critique!
So whatever your opinion, you really do owe it to yourself to inform yourself with at least a rudimentary knowledge of the current warming trend, which will wreck havoc on the Earth if not checked. And Gore's book is a great way to do so.
40 of 50 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Just like the movie, except it's a book,
It's unfortunate that there are no preview pages currently available on Amazon. The book is not printed like a typical non-fiction work of black-and-white text and charts. Instead, 90% of the pages are full-page, full-color photographs, maps, charts or graphs, with a few sentences or short paragraphs on each image describing the situation. While there are 328 pages, it can probably be read by most people in the time it takes to watch the movie.
Most of the photos and graphics are exact copies of the ones shown in the film. In most cases where animations were shown in the film, a series of similar graphics are in the book.
I would say An Inconvenient Truth makes a very good "coffee table" book -- easy to pick up, flip through quickly, look at some interesting graph, and share and discuss among friends.
The book's goal, in my opinion, is to say, "global warming is a large, real problem needing urgent attention, and we can solve it," and it does a good job at that. It is beyond the scope of the book to discuss solutions in any detail, and it leaves you with a few leads to help solve global warming (in the back of the book), but specifics are left mainly as an exercise for the reader. Gore argues that (lack of) political will is the biggest obstacle to solving the issue, and he encourages readers to contact their political leaders to change that.
Like the film, there are mini-biographies of Al Gore laced throughout the book -- about five; each touches on a turning point in Gore's life -- usually a loss or near loss -- that guided him down the path that lead him to making this book. I could have done without these, as I feel they distract from the other content of the book, but they are easy to skip. (I do see the value in including them, however, and you will find them interesting if you want to know more about the author's personal life.) They are in a different style from the rest of the book; they read a bit like a magazine, with quarter- or half-page-sized (usually black and white) photos accompanying them.
In conclusion, the book is essentially the same as the film, but in a handy, take-it-with-you "book" form. The book adds a few more photographs, and a useful "Top 10 Arguments Against 'Global Warming is Real'" (something like that) at the end, but not much else. I enjoyed the delivery of the film more, as I felt the impact of Gore's speeches (where timing was sometimes very important) and the colloquial style of the film did not translate as well as they could have on to the page.
Recommended if you can't see the film, if you don't want to sit through the "Al Gore" parts of the film, or if you loved the film and want a hardcopy to show your friends some of your favorite charts. Not recommended if you're looking for more in-depth coverage of the material.
36 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Citizen Gore tells VERY clear truths about global conditions,
Then Tennessee's Senator, Gore sporadically came across as if he were trying to impress audiences as opposed to writing a book on a subject which he personally and passionately cares about. He certainly knew what he was talking about, but it did not seem like the language 'average' people would use to discuss the same issues in 'everyday' conversations.
Now apparently not having to 'prove' anything in any political race, the real Al Gore is free to shine through--and what a clarifying read he provides with these changes. His 'private citizen' freedom is what makes this text nicely and quickly illustrate its accompanying data.
Statistics weren't included in this book to overwhelm or intimidate the reader, they are actually provided for an accessible and ultimately enjoyable read by the broadest audiences possible.
This too makes the book a serious clarion call without tipping the balance into 'sky-is-falling' tactics which I associate with extremists. Realizing that environmental conditions are very serious, he also knows that how you sell both a scenario and potential solutions are essential to then implementing successful outcomes.
Hearing that our lifestyle is responsible for environmental destruction which is only likely to increase under unaltered consumption patterns is uncomfortable for many Americans (me included) but important.
Instead of being a 'things suck in America' diatribe', Gore's approach encourages citizens to think about the things which we can and should be doing to save this planet and ourselves. Environmentally responsible politics are not a 'far out special interest' but a practical action in step with other American events.
39 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars stunning book,
And tempering that love with a clear, easy to understand and accurate survey of all the clear reasons that the planet is getting hotter, and even more, inspiring us with hope that we can still do something about it if we act now.
I wish this book was in the hands of every politician and every school teacher, and indeed everyone who runs a big oil company or auto company and wants to help our country and the world to change direction.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a very good book!,
A Kid's Review
Most Helpful First | Newest First
An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It by Al Gore (Paperback - May 26, 2006)