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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gail Karwoski's TSUNAMI: A Powerful, Well-written Book that You Won't Forget, September 13, 2006
This review is from: TSUNAMI: The True Story of an April Fools' Day Disaster (Darby Creek Publishing) (Hardcover)
Mention the word, "tsunami," and even the brave people of the world will run for higher ground. But nobody was shouting a warning in 1946 on a sunny April Fool's Day in Laupahoehoe, Hawaii when twenty-six people, including sixteen school children, were killed by a tsunami.

Karwoski got the idea for this book while visiting Hawaii the summer before the deadly 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. After doing a great deal of reseach, she found that the tsunami that hit Laupahoehoe caused scientists to study tsunamis and develop a warning system.

Illustrated by John MacDonald, this book is well-organized with five chapters, a "further information" section, and a bibliography. Chapter one is a dramatic account of the tragic tsunami that hit Laupahoehoe, Hawaii in 1946. The second chapter covers that same tsunami as it moves on to Hilo. Chapter three details the deadly history of tsunamis. Tsunami science is the subject of chapter four, and chapter five tells about the warning system developed by scientists.

Well-written, meticulously-researched, and fast-paced, dramatic details including eye-witness reports, make this book an excellent choice for middle schoolers or anyone older than nine who would like to learn about tsunamis.

Overall, this is a powerful story of a natural disaster that offers valuable information.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't let the recommended age description fool you, January 13, 2007
By 
Charles M. Nobles (Tulsa, OK United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: TSUNAMI: The True Story of an April Fools' Day Disaster (Darby Creek Publishing) (Hardcover)
The publisher of this book states it is suitable for ages 11 and up. Since I typically do not review children's books I did not intend to read it and placed it on a stack to pass on to someone that would. However, as luck would have it, I met the author at a booksellers trade show in Denver and promised her I would at least take another look at it. I am glad I did.

This is one of the most readable, informative books not only on a deadly Tsunami that struck the coast of Hilo and Laupahoehoe, Hawaii, on April Fools' Day in 1946, but about Tsunami's in general and the creation of a global warning system in the Pacific Rim. The tragic story of the April Fools'Day tsunami which claimed the lives of 26 residents in the Laupahoehoe area, including 16 school children, is told in a narrative style that brings the event into sharp focus and provides a foundation for the remainder of the book.

In addition to the Laupahoehoe and Hilo story the book provides a non-technical, understandable explanation of the Pacific Tsunami Warning System, installed after the April Fools' Day tragedy, as well as what causes tsunami's, their history, the scientific efforts to understand and predict them, and a discussion of the day after Christmas 2004 Tsunami in the Indian Ocean that claimed hunderds of thousands of lives. Also, there are a number of helpful sidebars that provide answers to multiple questions about the causes of tsunami's as well as an excellent bibliography and "further information" section that would be a credit to a more scholarly work.

To be sure this book is suitable for ages 11 and up but I submit it will be of use and interest to readers of practically any age remotely interested in the history of Tsunami's and the state of the science dealing with their causes and detection. The author is a former school teacher and was named Author of the Year in Georgia. This book is a testament to her award winning, writing abilities.
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TSUNAMI: The True Story of an April Fools' Day Disaster (Darby Creek Publishing)
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