Isaac’s Storm by Erik Larson

     In the wake of the wicked storms that have hit the Gulf Coast recently (Gee, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita quickly come to mind) it might be easy to forget the pounding the region has had in times past.  Perhaps the worst tragedy ever occurred a little over a hundred years ago, when one of the most horrendous hurricanes of all time slammed into Galveston, Texas in 1900.  It obliterated the entire town and took over 6,000 lives.Xw12_1

    Isaac’s Storm is the gut-wrenching account of this ferocious catastrophe, told from the perspective of Isaac Cline, Weather Bureau meteorologist in Galveston at this time.  The author illustrates the character of Isaac quite well, portraying him as a highly well-intentioned man of morals who was misguided by the biases of the time.  Larson also animates the town of Galveston quite effectively, and peppers his account with historical asides and an acute sense of suspense – read it and you can very effectively feel the oncoming doom.

     If your interest is piqued by Isaac’s Storm, you might want to read another book that’s a recent addition to the Greensboro Public Library – The Great Hurricane-1938.

(William Hicks, Information Services)   

   

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