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The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the G...
by Timothy Egan

Language

English

Pages

353

Publication Date

September 01, 2006

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<DIV><P><B>In a tour de force of historical reportage, Timothy Egan’s National Book Award–winning story rescues an iconic chapter of American history from the shadows.</B></P><P>The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Timothy Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones. Brilliantly capturing the terrifying drama of catastrophe, he does equal justice to the human characters who become his heroes, “the stoic, long-suffering men and women whose lives he opens up with urgency and respect” (<I>New York Times</I>). In an era that promises ever-greater natural disasters, The Worst Hard Time is “arguably the best nonfiction book yet” (<I>Austin Statesman Journal</I>) on the greatest environmental disaster ever to be visited upon our land and a powerful reminder about the dangers of trifling with nature.</P><P>This e-book includes a sample chapter of THE IMMORTAL IRISHMAN.</P></DIV>
The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America
by Timothy Egan

Language

English

Pages

349

Publication Date

October 19, 2009

Product Description
Customer Reviews
Timothy Egan turns his historian's eye to the largest-ever forest fire in America and offers an epic, cautionary tale for our time. </B></P><P>On the afternoon of August 20, 1910, a battering ram of wind moved through the drought-stricken national forests of Washington, Idaho, and Montana, whipping the hundreds of small blazes burning across the forest floor into a roaring inferno that jumped from treetop to ridge as it raged, destroying towns and timber in the blink of an eye. Forest rangers had assembled nearly ten thousand men to fight the fires, but no living person had seen anything like those flames, and neither the rangers nor anyone else knew how to subdue them. Egan recreates the struggles of the overmatched rangers against the implacable fire with unstoppable dramatic force, and the larger story of outsized president Teddy Roosevelt and his chief forester, Gifford Pinchot, that follows is equally resonant. Pioneering the notion of conservation, Roosevelt and Pinchot did nothing less than create the idea of public land as our national treasure, owned by every citizen. Even as TR's national forests were smoldering they were saved: The heroism shown by his rangers turned public opinion permanently in favor of the forests, though it changed the mission of the forest service in ways we can still witness today.</P><P>This e-book includes a sample chapter of SHORT NIGHTS OF THE SHADOW CATCHER.</P></DIV>
Origin Story: A Big History of Everything
by David Christian

Language

English

Pages

325

Publication Date

May 22, 2018

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>"I have long been a fan of David Christian. In <i>Origin Story</i>, he elegantly weaves evidence and insights from many scientific and historical disciplines into a single, accessible historical narrative." --Bill Gates<br /><br /><i>A captivating history of the universe -- from before the dawn of time through the far reaches of the distant future.</i></b><br /><br />Most historians study the smallest slivers of time, emphasizing specific dates, individuals, and documents. But what would it look like to study the whole of history, from the big bang through the present day -- and even into the remote future? How would looking at the full span of time change the way we perceive the universe, the earth, and our very existence?<br /><br />These were the questions David Christian set out to answer when he created the field of "Big History," the most exciting new approach to understanding where we have been, where we are, and where we are going. In <i>Origin Story</i>, Christian takes readers on a wild ride through the entire 13.8 billion years we've come to know as "history." By focusing on defining events (thresholds), major trends, and profound questions about our origins, Christian exposes the hidden threads that tie everything together -- from the creation of the planet to the advent of agriculture, nuclear war, and beyond.<br /><br />With stunning insights into the origin of the universe, the beginning of life, the emergence of humans, and what the future might bring, <i>Origin Story</i> boldly reframes our place in the cosmos.<br /><br />
The Ends of the World: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and O...
by Peter Brannen

Language

English

Pages

330

Publication Date

June 13, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><strong><em>New York Times </em>Editors' Choice 2017</strong></p><p><strong><em>Forbes </em>Top 10 Best Environment, Climate, and Conservation Book of 2017</strong></p><p><strong>As new groundbreaking research suggests that climate change played a major role in the most extreme catastrophes in the planet's history, award-winning science journalist Peter Brannen takes us on a wild ride through the planet's five mass extinctions and, in the process, offers us a glimpse of our increasingly dangerous future</strong> </p><p>Our world has ended five times: it has been broiled, frozen, poison-gassed, smothered, and pelted by asteroids. In <em>The Ends of the World</em>, Peter Brannen dives into deep time, exploring Earth’s past dead ends, and in the process, offers us a glimpse of our possible future.</p><p>Many scientists now believe that the climate shifts of the twenty-first century have analogs in these five extinctions. Using the visible clues these devastations have left behind in the fossil record, <em>The Ends of the World</em> takes us inside “scenes of the crime,” from South Africa to the New York Palisades, to tell the story of each extinction. Brannen examines the fossil record—which is rife with creatures like dragonflies the size of sea gulls and guillotine-mouthed fish—and introduces us to the researchers on the front lines who, using the forensic tools of modern science, are piecing together what really happened at the crime scenes of the Earth’s biggest whodunits.</p><p>Part road trip, part history, and part cautionary tale, <em>The Ends of the World</em> takes us on a tour of the ways that our planet has clawed itself back from the grave, and casts our future in a completely new light.</p>
The Human Age: The World Shaped By Us
by Diane Ackerman

Language

English

Pages

350

Publication Date

September 10, 2014

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p>Winner of the National Outdoor Book Award and the PEN New England Henry David Thoreau Prize.<br /><br /><br /><br />A dazzling, inspiring tour through the ways that humans are working with nature to try to save the planet.</p><br /><p>With her celebrated blend of scientific insight, clarity, and curiosity, Diane Ackerman explores our human capacity both for destruction and for invention as we shape the future of the planet Earth. Ackerman takes us to the mind-expanding frontiers of science, exploring the fact that the "natural" and the "human" now inescapably depend on one another, drawing from "fields as diverse as evolutionary robotics…nanotechnology, 3-D printing and biomimicry" (<em>New York Times Book Review</em>), with probing intelligence, a clear eye, and an ever-hopeful heart.</p>
Into the Raging Sea: Thirty-Three Mariners, One Megastorm, and th...
by Rachel Slade

Language

English

Pages

391

Publication Date

May 01, 2018

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><strong>ONE OF JANET MASLIN’S MUST-READ BOOKS OF THE SUMMER</strong></p><p><strong>A <em>NEW YORK TIMES</em> EDITOR'S CHOICE</strong></p><p><strong>ONE OF <em>OUTSIDE</em> MAGAZINE’S BEST BOOKS OF THE SUMMER</strong></p><p><strong>ONE OF AMAZON'S BEST NONFICTION BOOKS OF THE YEAR SO FAR</strong></p><p><strong>“A powerful and affecting story, beautifully handled by Slade, a journalist who clearly knows ships and the sea.”—Douglas Preston, <em>New York Times Book Review</em></strong></p><p><strong>“A <em>Perfect Storm </em>for a new generation.”</strong><br />—<strong>Ben Mezrich, bestselling author of <em>The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook</em></strong></p><p><p><p>On October 1, 2015, Hurricane Joaquin barreled into the Bermuda Triangle and swallowed the container ship <em>El Faro</em><em> </em>whole, resulting in the worst American shipping disaster in thirty-five years. No one could fathom how a vessel equipped with satellite communications, a sophisticated navigation system, and cutting-edge weather forecasting could suddenly vanish—until now.</p><p>Relying on hundreds of exclusive interviews with family members and maritime experts, as well as the words of the crew members themselves—whose conversations were captured by the ship’s data recorder—journalist Rachel Slade unravels the mystery of the sinking of <em>El Faro.</em><em> </em>As she recounts the final twenty-four hours onboard, Slade vividly depicts the officers’ anguish and fear as they struggled to carry out Captain Michael Davidson’s increasingly bizarre commands, which, they knew, would steer them straight into the eye of the storm. Taking a hard look at America's aging merchant marine fleet, Slade also reveals the truth about modern shipping—a cut-throat industry plagued by razor-thin profits and ever more violent hurricanes fueled by global warming.</p><p>A richly reported account of a singular tragedy, <em>Into the Raging Sea </em>takes us into the heart of an age-old American industry, casting new light on the hardworking men and women who paid the ultimate price in the name of profit.</p><p></p><p></p>
The World in a Grain: The Story of Sand and How It Transformed Ci...
by Vince Beiser

Language

English

Pages

304

Publication Date

August 07, 2018

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>The gripping story of the most important overlooked commodity in the world--sand--and the crucial role it plays in our lives.</b><br /><br />After water and air, sand is the natural resource that we consume more than any other--even more than oil. Every concrete building and paved road on Earth, every computer screen and silicon chip, is made from sand. From Egypt's pyramids to the Hubble telescope, from the world's tallest skyscraper to the sidewalk below it, from Chartres' stained-glass windows to your iPhone, sand shelters us, empowers us, engages us, and inspires us. It's the ingredient that makes possible our cities, our science, our lives--and our future.<br /><br />And, incredibly, we're running out of it.<br /><br /><i>The World in a Grain</i> is the compelling true story of the hugely important and diminishing natural resource that grows more essential every day, and of the people who mine it, sell it, build with it--and sometimes, even kill for it. It's also a provocative examination of the serious human and environmental costs incurred by our dependence on sand, which has received little public attention. Not all sand is created equal: Some of the easiest sand to get to is the least useful. Award-winning journalist Vince Beiser delves deep into this world, taking readers on a journey across the globe, from the United States to remote corners of India, China, and Dubai to explain why sand is so crucial to modern life. Along the way, readers encounter world-changing innovators, island-building entrepreneurs, desert fighters, and murderous sand pirates. The result is an entertaining and eye-opening work, one that is both unexpected and involving, rippling with fascinating detail and filled with surprising characters.
Lab Girl
by Hope Jahren

Language

English

Pages

306

Publication Date

April 05, 2016

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b><b><b>Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography</b></b><br />A <i>New York Times </i>2016 Notable Book<br />National Best Seller<br />Named one of <i>TIME</i> magazine’s "100 Most Influential People"<br />An Amazon Top 20 Best Book of 2016<br />A <i>Washington Post</i> Best Memoir of 2016<br /><b>A <i>TIME</i> and <i>Entertainment Weekly </i>Best Book of 2016 <br /></b></b><br />An illuminating debut memoir of a woman in science; a moving portrait of a longtime friendship; and a stunningly fresh look at plants that will forever change how you see the natural world<br /> <br />Acclaimed scientist Hope Jahren has built three laboratories in which she’s studied trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Her first book is a revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also so much more. <br /><i><br />Lab Girl</i> is a book about work, love, and the mountains that can be moved when those two things come together. It is told through Jahren’s remarkable stories: about her childhood in rural Minnesota with an uncompromising mother and a father who encouraged hours of play in his classroom’s labs; about how she found a sanctuary in science, and learned to perform lab work done “with both the heart and the hands”; and about the inevitable disappointments, but also the triumphs and exhilarating discoveries, of scientific work.<br /><br />Yet at the core of this book is the story of a relationship Jahren forged with a brilliant, wounded man named Bill, who becomes her lab partner and best friend. Their sometimes rogue adventures in science take them from the Midwest across the United States and back again, over the Atlantic to the ever-light skies of the North Pole and to tropical Hawaii, where she and her lab currently make their home. <br /><br />Jahren’s probing look at plants, her astonishing tenacity of spirit, and her acute insights on nature enliven every page of this extraordinary book. <i>Lab Girl</i> opens your eyes to the beautiful, sophisticated mechanisms within every leaf, blade of grass, and flower petal. Here is an eloquent demonstration of what can happen when you find the stamina, passion, and sense of sacrifice needed to make a life out of what you truly love, as you discover along the way the person you were meant to be.
Isaac's Storm: A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in Hist...
by Erik Larson

Language

English

Pages

338

Publication Date

October 19, 2011

Product Description
Customer Reviews
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a great confidence suffused America. Isaac Cline was one of the era's new men, a scientist who believed he knew all there was to know about the motion of clouds and the behavior of storms. The idea that a hurricane could damage the city of Galveston, Texas, where he was based, was to him preposterous, "an absurd delusion." It was 1900, a year when America felt bigger and stronger than ever before. Nothing in nature could hobble the gleaming city of Galveston, then a magical place that seemed destined to become the New York of the Gulf.<br /><br />That August, a strange, prolonged heat wave gripped the nation and killed scores of people in New York and Chicago. Odd things seemed to happen everywhere: A plague of crickets engulfed Waco. The Bering Glacier began to shrink. Rain fell on Galveston with greater intensity than anyone could remember. Far away, in Africa, immense thunderstorms blossomed over the city of Dakar, and great currents of wind converged. A wave of atmospheric turbulence slipped from the coast of western Africa. Most such waves faded quickly. This one did not.<br /><br />In Cuba, America's overconfidence was made all too obvious by the Weather Bureau's obsession with controlling hurricane forecasts, even though Cuba's indigenous weathermen had pioneered hurricane science. As the bureau's forecasters assured the nation that all was calm in the Caribbean, Cuba's own weathermen fretted about ominous signs in the sky. A curious stillness gripped Antigua. Only a few unlucky sea captains discovered that the storm had achieved an intensity no man alive had ever experienced.<br /><br />In Galveston, reassured by Cline's belief that no hurricane could seriously damage the city, there was celebration. Children played in the rising water. Hundreds of people gathered at the beach to marvel at the fantastically tall waves and gorgeous pink sky, until the surf began ripping the city's beloved beachfront apart. Within the next few hours Galveston would endure a hurricane that to this day remains the nation's deadliest natural disaster. In Galveston alone at least 6,000 people, possibly as many as 10,000, would lose their lives, a number far greater than the combined death toll of the Johnstown Flood and 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.<br /><br />And Isaac Cline would experience his own unbearable loss.<br /><br />Meticulously researched and vividly written, <b>Isaac's Storm</b> is based on Cline's own letters, telegrams, and reports, the testimony of scores of survivors, and our latest understanding of the hows and whys of great storms. Ultimately, however, it is the story of what can happen when human arrogance meets nature's last great uncontrollable force. As such, <b>Isaac's Storm</b> carries a warning for our time.<br /><br /><br /><i>From the Hardcover edition.</i>
The Bonanza King: John Mackay and the Battle over the Greatest Ri...
by Gregory Crouch

Language

English

Pages

481

Publication Date

June 19, 2018

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>“A monumentally researched biography of one of the 19th century’s wealthiest self-made Americans…Well-written and worthwhile…John Mackay spent a lifetime defying odds.” —<i>The Wall Street Journal</i></b><BR> <BR><b>“No one does a better job than Crouch when he explores the subject of mining, and no one does a better job than he when he describes the hardscrabble lives of miners.” </b>—<b><i>San Francisco Chronicle</i></b><BR> <BR>The rags-to-riches American frontier tale of an Irish immigrant who outwits, outworks, and outmaneuvers thousands of rivals to take control of Nevada’s Comstock Lode—the rich body of gold and silver so immensely valuable that it changed the destiny of the United States.<BR><BR>Born in 1831, John W. Mackay was a penniless Irish immigrant who came of age in New York City, went to California during the Gold Rush, and mined without much luck for eight years. When he heard of riches found on the other side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in 1859, Mackay abandoned his claim and walked a hundred miles to the Comstock Lode in Nevada.<BR> <BR> Over the course of the next dozen years, Mackay worked his way up from nothing, thwarting the pernicious “Bank Ring” monopoly to seize control of the most concentrated cache of precious metals ever found on earth, the legendary “Big Bonanza,” a stupendously rich body of gold and silver ore discovered 1,500 feet beneath the streets of Virginia City, the ultimate Old West boomtown. But for the ore to be worth anything it had to be found, claimed, and successfully extracted, each step requiring enormous risk and the creation of an entirely new industry.<BR> <BR> Now Gregory Crouch tells Mackay’s amazing story—how he extracted the ore from deep underground and used his vast mining fortune to crush the transatlantic telegraph monopoly of the notorious Jay Gould. When Mackay died in 1902, front-page obituaries in Europe and the United States hailed him as one of the most admired Americans of the age. Featuring great period photographs and maps, <i>The Bonanza King</i> is a dazzling tour de force, a riveting history of Virginia City, Nevada, the Comstock Lode, and America itself.

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