Engineering & Transportation
Buy New
$32.58
Qty:1
  • List Price: $36.95
  • Save: $4.37 (12%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 9 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
Want it Tuesday, April 22? Order within and choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Trade in your item
Get a $6.04
Gift Card.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more

The Great Thirst: Californians and Water-A History, Revised Edition Paperback


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from Collectible from
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$81.84
Paperback
"Please retry"
$32.58
$24.99 $17.49
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"

Frequently Bought Together

The Great Thirst: Californians and Water-A History, Revised Edition + Cadillac Desert: The American West and Its Disappearing Water, Revised Edition + Introduction to Water in California (California Natural History Guides)
Price for all three: $61.35

Buy the selected items together

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Big Spring Books
Editors' Picks in Spring Releases
Ready for some fresh reads? Browse our picks for Big Spring Books to please all kinds of readers.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; Revised edition (May 7, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520224566
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520224568
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,202 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Few books will rival The Great Thirst for the sanity and balance of its treatment, for its massive and detailed research, for the smoothness of its style and breadth of its insightful interpretation. Norris Hundley has written a tour de force." - Gene M. Gressley, Pacific Historical Review "[Hundley] has given the reader a rich history buttressed with admirable objectivity. Above all, he has taken a subject of complexity and given it clarity." - Robert W. Righter, American Historical Review "An astonishing account of politics, power, greed and legal battles compounded by north-south rivalry." - Publisher's Weekly "This revised and expanded edition of Professor Hundley's seminal history now includes a fascinating treatment of important developments in the California water arena during the 1990s. The new edition is must-reading for all who hope to understand the California water scene." - Henry Vaux, Jr., University of California "The best reference on California water history that there is." - William Kahrl, author of Water and Power"

From the Inside Flap

"This revised and expanded edition of Professor Hundley's seminal history now includes a fascinating treatment of important developments in the California water arena during the 1990s. The new edition is must-reading for all who hope to understand the California water scene."—Henry Vaux, Jr., University of California

"The best reference on California water history that there is."—William Kahrl, author of Water and Power

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Philip Carl on February 15, 2003
Format: Paperback
The Great Thirst is as long and detailed as the subject matter it tackles, a complete history of Californians and water. The revised edition came out in 2001 and addresses the recent developments in the Bay-Delta program (formally know as CALFED) and important water policy changes at Mono Lake and in the Owens Valley. The book consists of 8 chapters covering the early, pre-European settlement, the role water development played in the growth of Los Angeles and San Francisco, the development of large state and inter-state water projects, the recent changes in water policy brought on largely by shortages, and environment concerns, and the author's summary.
To give you a feel for the detailed scope of the work, the author includes over 100 pages of notes to supplement the text, and a bibliography of nearly the same length! I have yet to find anything the matches The Great Thirst in its unbiased depiction of the complex history, water policies, competing interests, and future challenges that have and will come to shape California.
The author, an American History professor at UCLA, presents the reader with the single most important fact facing California, "Californian's are currently using more water than well be available on a long-term basis. The deficit is 1.6 million acre-feet annually, which can rise to more than 5.1 million acre-feet during drought years..." The public appetite for new water development has come to a halt given the high cost to state budgets and more importantly the surrounding landscape. But the growth of development and population continues marching on, leaving you to wonder how the final chapter of this important story will be written.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Wanda Ochoa on October 13, 2001
Format: Paperback
I was pleasantly surprised by the first edition of this book, which was much shorter than the new one. It is broader in range than any other account that I know on this absolutely central issue for California, and its depth doesn't seem to be compromised at all in spite of its comprehensibility. It isn't exactly lively writing, but it's clear nonetheless. I think Hundley's book offers lay readers a fuller picture of why water is so important in California and the west, and how people have tried to manage it, than any other single volume.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
10 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A_2007_reader on July 3, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Reisner's book "Cadillac Desert" is much more readible, but this book is a data dump of the above and more of a primary reference.
Recommended if you are a pedant or just like more raw unfiltered data.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
7 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Meet A 1313 on May 15, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is well written, but the way the author romanticizes ancient people living in California and demonizes its modern inhabitants puts me off.

I do not mind an author's biases creeping in his writing but then he should be able to carry if off with readers who dont disagree with him. For example, I read Reisner's Cadillac Desert which is a totally biased commentary on California's water and I rarely agreed with his viewpoint, but he puts it in such an interesting manner that it makes good reading nevertheless and I loved that book. The author of this book not only makes preposterous statements (for example, saying that the Indian inhabitants of America lived lives in harmony in nature because they were wiser than us) but makes them without constructing a strong intellectual platform that might engage someone who thinks differently.

Any new information the book provides is lost in the lengthy and tedious literary style that the author adopts. I am a fairly keen reader, and I must say that I dozed off reading this book more often than with others of this genre.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Product Images from Customers

Search
ARRAY(0xa1df4ae0)