Saturday, December 25, 2010

Another book on waves

I have linked my review of Susan Casey's book, "The Wave." The review in the San Jose Mercury News brought a response from Bruce Parker, formerly chief scientist of the National Ocean Service, NOAA, and currently a visiting professor at the Center for Maritime Systems, Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, N.J.

Here is part of what he wrote:

Having read your review of Susan Casey's book in The Mercury News, I thought you might be interested in another dramatic just-published book on waves. But this book is very different than Casey's, in spite of the very similar covers. There is no surfing (except when Captain Cook
first saw Tahitians enjoying that sport in 1777), but the dangers are far greater -- and literally millions die. This book from Palgrave Macmillan is called:

"The Power of the Sea: Tsunamis, Storm Surges, Rogue Waves, and Our Quest to Predict Disasters."

It tells the story of our long struggle to understand the physics of the sea so we can use that knowledge to predict when the sea will unleash its power against us (so we can get out of its way and survive). It is a 'popular' book that interweaves compelling stories of unpredicted natural disasters with fascinating stories of scientific discoveries, beginning with ancient mankind's strange ideas about the sea and working up to our latest advances in predicting the sea's moments of destruction.

More info can be found at his website: