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Extreme Weather: A Guide and Record Book (Revised and Updated) Revised and Updated Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393330151
ISBN-10: 039333015X
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"...this book virtually blows a gale in your face when you open it." Christopher Hirst, The Independent "Reach for Extreme Weather by Christopher Burt and you become mesmerised by the scale of hurricanes. League tables of the greatest, largest, fastest, deadliest and costliest storms across the US and the world all point to one conclusion-Katrina was no one-off event." The Times"

About the Author

Christopher C. Burt was co-founder and publisher of the acclaimed Compass American Guides series. His articles have appeared in the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, among others. He lives in Oakland, California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Revised and Updated edition (July 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039333015X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393330151
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 0.9 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #358,621 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book (like the last edition) is a sight for sore eyes and should be a staple item for weather enthusiasts and meteorologists; Chris' painstaking research presents us all with an up-to-date book of extremes (including maps) which challenge the out-of-date governmental and Internet resources that have attempted, in the past, to document record weather worldwide. Chris has published additional charts, tables and maps that you just can't find anywhere else in this latest edition. I really am not a big paper book fan becuase there is a lot of inaccurate stuff out there by amateur authors but this one is on my shelf at both work and home, and I frequently refer to it when meteorological extremes are challenged worldwide.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm not sure what I was thinking when I bought this book. I teach meteorology at a couple of universities, and I'm always wanting to update my knowledge in this area. This is basically a 'record' book...it takes the extremes of weathers around the world. The coldest spot, the windiest place, etc. The book has more lists of the 'ten most...' places. Though I found it interesting, it really wasn't the type of book that I can use in my classroom to explain 'why', which is usually what I want in weather books. I also like historical references and books on weather happenings historically, and this didn't fit the bill for me.

My favorite parts of the book were the pictures which were glorious and the historical records. I also like the older photos and the information that went with them. I would have liked to see more of those in the book.

For people who like books like The Guiness Records, and things like that, this book is right up your alley.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have always been interested in the weather. As a child I watched the clouds and learned the signs of weather change. I gradually began to see the patterns and thought it would be really neat to grow up to be a weather man. Then I took algebra in high school. My failure to grasp the rudiments of advanced math doomed my chances at a career in meteorology.

I did however retain my interest in the weather. Fast forward to the present many many years later and my wife brings home a copy of Extreme Weather from the library. I devoured the book. With my poor eyesight and arthritic neck I devour few books these days. After reading it I knew I had to have a copy to re-read at my leisure. It is chock full with facts, wonderful anecdotes, and first hand accounts of extreme and rare weather events written in a language that the non-professional can easily understand and enjoy. Throughout the book are many tables of records from all over the United States and the whole world. The back of the book lists many more weather record extremes including state and city records.

I hope the book is revised again in the next few years as climate change (whatever the cause) seems to lead to new extremes in weather across our planet.

R. E. G.
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Format: Paperback
"Extreme Weather" is a chatty and amusing compilation of the hottest, coldest, wettest, driest, stormiest, foggiest places in the United States, with references to the rest of the world.

But it turns out that the United States has more extreme weather than any other country. Author Christopher Burt says it is because America is big enough to encompass both cold northern air and warm southern air, without the east-west mountains that Eurasia has to keep them apart. Most American extreme weather champions are west of the Mississippi, with another concentration around the Gulf of Mexico.

Burt has the character to write about weather without reference to climate alarmism, a rare feat these days. He states, correctly, that even if the globe were warming, we would still get new records every year at both ends: cold and hot, warm and dry.

Although he takes pains to isolate his weather enthusiasm from climate change controversy, that doesn't mean the reader cannot draw his own conclusions. Most amusing is the list of F5 tornadoes.

We have been promised, repeatedly, that emitting carbon dioxide will result in more and more violent storms. The worst tornadoes, called F5 (more recently EF5) occur only in the United States, thanks to our curious topography. Burt has a list by decades.

From 1900-1909, there were 4. In the following decades, the totals were 5, 6, 5, 6, 13, 15, 13. Well, well, well, this is looking quite promising for the Chicken Littles, nearly three times as many in the second half the 20th century as in the first half.

Oops! Only 3 in the decade of the '80s. Then 10 in the '90s. But, oops again, we have concluded the Oughties with only 2.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For some reason not everyone finds facts and narratives on outlandish weather interesting. If you do, however, this book is the pinnacle. Burt could have made it 8 times longer and I would have never gotten bored. Full of fantastical information about places you'll never go and weather you'll never see - I eat that stuff up. If you are at all interested in anything weather related, you'll be hooked on this book.
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