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Isaac's Storm: A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in History Paperback – July 11, 2000
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Scientific Teaching Series
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Erik Larson's book on the deadliest hurricane in history has two main focal points: the hurricane itself; and the human drama of Isaac Cline, the Galveston meteorologist who failed to predict the intensity of the storm. The book meanders through occasional dry stretches of Isaac's pre-storm biography, and through the history of the U.S. Weather Bureau (they were interesting, but not nearly as interesting as the storm), but once it focuses on the events of September 8, 1900 and beyond, I wasn't able to set "Isaac's Storm" down. Especially compelling are the eerie descriptions of what it's like to sail through the eye of a hurricane, and of course the narrative (from the viewpoints of several survivors) of what it was like to be in Galveston before, during, and after the storm. If you are afraid of storms or of water, you might not want to read this book because Erik Larson puts you right there when the storm debris is caving in the side of your house, or when the "tide suddenly rises fully four feet at one bound".
The book itself is well written but for my taste was rather thin on the science alongside the human story. In the earlier chapters, there are sections devoted to the storm itself, but these disappear as the account develops. Most surprising is the lack of inclusion of any photographs from the time. This, and the lack of a decent map, leaves the reader unable to fully comprehend the aftermath of the storm.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Erik Larson puts a face on history. I had heard of the great Hurricane of 1900; however, I did not know how much the new weather service messed up. Read morePublished 3 days ago by E. Stevens
How do you say that you enjoyed reading a book of total devastation. Let's say that being a Hurricane Hugo refugee that I read this with great interest. Mr. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Patrick Lloyd
Another outstanding Larson work. This one a little heavy on technical aspects of meteorology. His depiction of human folly and the storms devastation is a great literary contrast. Read morePublished 7 days ago by tulabama
Just about anything Erik Larson writes is top-notch. It's history that reads like a novel. Real people come back to life through Larson's skillful crafting of the facts as... Read morePublished 8 days ago by RL Nelson
Not Larson's best effort. Not nearly as much depth, historical context, or color as his other books.Published 8 days ago by Richard J. Smith