California's vulnerability to earthquakes, although internalized by its citizens as a dread of the Big One, seems to be virtually ignored as developers continue to build in all directions, even atop faults and landslide-prone mountains. This narrative by the late author combines a history of Los Angeles' and San Francisco's growth with a lurid scenario of what the San Francisco Bay Area will look like after the Pacific plate lurches northward a few feet. Reisner ends the book imagining a collapsed Bay Bridge; a destroyed Oakland and UC-Berkeley campus; a burning Richmond; and serial destruction of BART, highways, aqueducts, and airports. It is likely the author planned to write a like scenario for L.A.'s day of doom, but even so, Reisner's work of warning effectively reminds us of the vast infrastructure required to sustain these two megalopolises. As befits the author of Cadillac Desert
(1986), Reisner highlights the vulnerability of water supplies, a point that will attract environmentalists to this work, as well as anyone who just likes a scary story. Gilbert TaylorCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Reisner manages the nearly impossible feat of explaining geopolitical history, hydro-engineering, plate tectonics and comparative seismology in an engaging, delightfully literate fashion. This important book will appeal to many, including those outside the Golden State. Environmentalists will naturally go for it, but Reisner's witty, concise prose will attract general readers, too." —Publishers Weekly
"This posthumous work by the author of the award-winning Cadillac Desert is a fitting tribute to his environmental concerns and the power of his writing." —Library Journal
"Nothing Stephen King has ever written is nearly as frightening." —The San Diego Union-Tribune