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4.6 out of 5 stars
The Weather Identification Handbook: The Ultimate Guide for Weather Watchers
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135 of 158 people found the following review helpful
on March 1, 2006
I am reluctant to criticize any book for being something other than what I expected it to be. I was looking for a 'basic meteorology' book. I wanted a better understanding of fronts, high- and low-pressure areas, wind patterns, world weather patterns, the influence of ocean currents, etc.

If you're looking for weather principles, this book is not for you. Unfortunately (for me), the book takes a taxonomic approach to weather. Approx. 2/3rds of the pages are dedicated to identifying and classifying various cloud formations and optical phenomena. If you read assiduously, you'll never mistake stratus for stratocumulus, cirrus for cirrocumulus, and, aha, there's some altostratus undulatus! And you'll learn of Corona, Glory, and Heiligenschein. Broad weather patterns and principles get short shrift, if they get any shrift at all. About page 178 (out of 192, incl. bibliography, credits, and index) you'll finally get into a discussion of air masses, fronts, depressions, etc.

Publishers are usually responsible for choosing the title. This book is mis-titled.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on February 15, 2005
When I first was getting into being a weather hobbyist, I checked out the bookstore and this was my first choice. It helps methodically layout what the different types of clouds there are and how to identify them, as well as understand how they work. This should be one of your first books in this area as well.
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42 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on September 7, 2005
This is an excellent book. It is generously illustrated, giving the user more types of cloud classification than most people will ever need to know. It then goes into storm development and other atmospheric conditions. The information is concisely organized and well presented. This is just an excellent book. Anyone with a casual interest in weather will find this book useful.

The book is printed on good quality stock and is full color throughout. I wouldn't be suprised if this is used as a meteorology textbook. It is reasonably priced so I encourage everyone who reads this review to strongly consider this book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on July 5, 2007
Such a statement is music to the ears of anyone who strives to encourage curiosity and promotes learning. We carry The Weather Identification Handbook with us in the car, identifying cloud formations, making our own weather predictions. We can grow with the book, now reading highlights, progressing into greater detail and increasing focus with age and ability. Isn't learning that sneaks up as fun, great?
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 8, 2007
This serves as the text for my meteorology class. It is quite thorough and offers many useful graphics to help seal the various theories into my brain.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 13, 2007
If you are interested in learning and classifying weather phenomenon this book is for you. The focus of the book is on clouds and it does a great job differentiating the ten major cloud types and describing the sub-species and varieties. The full color photographic illustrations are outstanding. The author does not get into too much detail about the science behind the phenomena, but that is not the intention.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2011
I purchased as a Christmas gift. We both find it useful for identifying different clouds and predicting weather fronts. Nice reference book for weather buffs and good overview for newbies/kids.
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on June 23, 2014
This book can be considered as a general public transcript of the International Cloud Atlas. Oddities like asperatus, wall clouds on top of a mountain, or rotor clouds that can have a thickness of 8000 metres (not feet) without producing precipitations are not discussed. Also the problem of elevated convection (cumulonimbus produced inside a mass of nimbostratus or being generated by altocumulus castellanus) is not discussed at all. In the USA, these clouds can generate heavy precipitation for a long time as it happened in Missouri in 1993. Also, the author could have used scientific units (the metre) and not the old units (the foot). Furthermore, the distinction between the cumulus and the altocumulus castellanus is incorrect because the book does not say that cumulus have generally (not always) their base below 2000 metres. The book implies that the cumulus cloud base is always below 2000 metres (inferior level clouds). The physics of these 2 types of clouds is fondamentally different. The International Cloud Atlas is more cautious and uses explictly the word generally. In addition the picture in p 48 talks about Altocumulus floccus. I am not that convinced; these clouds could be cumulus humilis that tended to overspread: their base is pretty flat. This book is an excellent introduction to weather for the general public but I would strongly advise glider pilots not to rely only on this book since they could not always identify correctly the clouds and face a bad outlanding due to their misunderstandings.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on August 17, 2013
This book has a weath of information in it. The problem I have with the book is the print is so so small. I can hardly make out the words. Unless you have 20/20 vision or extra strengh glasses do not buy
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on November 21, 2014
I purchased this as a gift. It seems to be a pretty straight forward weather book. It has lots of interesting and pretty pictures. The pages are nice quality and the information is pretty easy to understand and read. I would recommend this to a casual weather observer who would just like something to look at now and again. It doesn't appear to be overly-in depth. If you are looking for a huge encyclopedia of weather, this is not that kind of book. It's not bad though!
One caution: Everything came stuffed into extremely poor packaging! Nothing was protected and this book had a few dents in it when it arrived. I don't know if that happened before it was shipped or during the process of being thrown into a single wrap cardboard sleeve with a hard back book and an ornament--things that should not be wrapped "free floating" together! I have no idea which seller really packed it like this...order it separately next time I guess!
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