Isaac's storm a man, a time, and the deadliest hurricane in history

by Larson, Erik, 1954-

Format: Kindle Book 2011 2011
  Adobe EPUB ebook
  OverDrive Read
Availability: Unavailable 0 of 7 copies
11 people on waitlist
Unavailable from OverDrive (7)
Summary
In 1900, Isaac Monroe Cline was in charge of the Galveston station of the U.S. Weather Bureau. When he heard the deep thudding waves on Galveston's beach in the early morning of September 8th, however, Cline refused to be alarmed. The city had been hit by bad weather before.
Contents
Atlantic Ocean map
Galveston map
Beach: September 8, 1900
Law of storms
Serpent's coil
Spectacle
Cataclysm
Strange news
Haunted.

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "This engrossing disaster book concerns the Galveston hurricane of 1900, still by far the high-water mark in American natural catastrophes. Like the Johnstown Flood that occurred 10 years earlier (see David McCullough's Johnstown Flood, 1987), nature's wrath was mightily aided by man's obliviousness. Larson highlights two central actors in the drama: the hurricane itself, beginning with its origin in Saharan westerly winds, and Isaac Cline, the Weather Bureau's sentinel in Galveston. Setting the stage, Larson depicts a wealthy, optimistic Galveston, unconcerned by its site on a barrier island scant feet above sea level, blithely ignorant of the storm heading its way. En route to destiny, the hurricane previously walloped Cuba, but a Cuban forecaster's intuitive prediction that Texas was the next landfall was not permitted to be telegraphed out by the Weather Bureau's man in Havana. Skeptical of intuition, he believed in meteorological facts, which convinced him the storm was fizzling out east of Florida. For the main act, Larson reconstructs Isaac Cline's day on 8 September 1900 and ratchets up the tension as clouds gather, the effective device being the sequence of perceptions that disaster was inescapable. Were the rolling waves worrisome? If not, the splintering of the boardwalk concentrated Galvestonians' attention--but, by then, the single railroad out was cut. A further mark of Larson's depth as a writer is his ambivalence about Cline, who may not have acted as heroically as depicted in his own memoir. Although the subject is grim, this telling is a deftly told fable of folly and fate. --Gilbert Taylor"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Torqued by drama and taut with suspense, this absorbing narrative of the 1900 hurricane that inundated Galveston, Tex., conveys the sudden, cruel power of the deadliest natural disaster in American history. Told largely from the perspective of Isaac Cline, the senior U.S. Weather Bureau official in Galveston at the time, the story considers an era when "the hubris of men led them to believe they could disregard even nature itself." As barometers plummet and wind gauges are plucked from their moorings, Larson (Lethal Passage) cuts cinematically from the eerie "eyewall" of the hurricane to the mundane hubbub of a lunchroom moments before it capitulates to the arriving winds, from the neat pirouette of Cline's house amid rising waters to the bridge of the steamship Pensacola, tossed like flotsam on the roiling seas. Most intriguingly, Larson details the mistakes that led bureau officials to dismiss warnings about the storm, which killed over 6000 and destroyed a third of the island city. The government's weather forecasting arm registered not only temperature and humidity but also political climate, civic boosterism and even sibling rivalries. America's patronizing stance toward Cuba, for instance, shut down forecasts from Cuban meteorologists, who had accurately predicted the Galveston storm's course and true scale, even as U.S. weather officials issued mollifying bulletins calling for mere rain and high winds. Larson expertly captures the power of the storm itself and the ironic, often catastrophic consequences of the unpredictable intersection of natural force and human choice. Major ad/promo; author tour; simultaneous Random House audio; foreign rights sold in Germany, Holland, Italy, Japan and the U.K. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Cline, Isaac Monroe, 1861-1955
Hurricanes Texas Galveston History 20th century
Floods Texas Galveston History 20th century
Science
Nonfiction
History
Galveston (Tex.) History 20th century.
Galveston (Tex.) Biography.
Electronic books.
1861-1955.
20th century.
Publisher New York :Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group,2011
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group2011
Contributors Cline, Isaac Monroe, 1861-1955.
OverDrive, Inc.
Language English
System Details Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Format: OverDrive READ
Format: Kindle Book
Format: Adobe EPUB eBook
Requires Amazon Kindle or Adobe Digital Editions
Description 1 online resource
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references.
ISBN 9780307874092
0307874095
Other Classic View