Mark Twain said it - Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it. Weather plays an important role in our lives and many books have been written about significant weather events and those who have survived their battle with the elements. Enjoy this list of books about weather and natural disasters.
The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition by Caroline Alexander.
Read by Bill Wallace. Reading time 7 hours 24 minutes.
Chronicles the survival of Ernest Shackleton and his crew of twenty-seven men marooned on ice floes off the coast of Antarctica in 1915. Recounts the entrapment and later destruction of their ship, the Endurance, by pack ice and the hardships the men suffered before their rescue in 1916.
Download The Endurance, DB47531
F5: Devastation, Survival, and the Most Violent Tornado Outbreak of the Twentieth Century by Mark Levine
Read by Jim Zeiger. Reading time 11 hours 18 minutes.
Focuses on Limestone County, Alabama, residents' experiences during two of the 148 tornadoes that ripped through thirteen states in April 1974. Recounts the struggles of a teenaged couple caught in their car, a mother separated from her toddler and newborn, and a family that lost half its members. Some strong language. 2007.
Download F5, DB66201
The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, and the Mississippi Gulf Coast by Douglas Brinkley
Read by Ted Stoddard. Reading time 28 hours 4 minutes.
Tulane history professor details a week in August 2005 when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Mississippi-Alabama Gulf coast. Highlights individual tales of heroism and rescues, describes the man-made faults that led to breached levees, and criticizes local and federal governments for failing to protect their citizens. Bestseller. 2006.
Download The Great Deluge, DB62506
The Great Hurricane: 1938 by Cherie Burns.
Read by Laura Giannarelli. Reading time 6 hours 20 minutes.
Account of the hurricane that ravaged coastal regions of Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts in September 1938, killing hundreds and causing millions of dollars in damage. Draws on archival sources and survivor testimony to trace the storm's path and reconstruct the harrowing experiences of its victims.
Download: The Great Hurricane: 1938, DB60947
Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer.
Read by Roy Avers. Reading time 8 hours 57 minutes.
A journalist's first-hand report on the ill-fated Mt. Everest expedition of May 1996 in which a freak storm claimed the lives of nine adventurers. Describes the grueling ascent of the climbers, their sense of elation at reaching the peak, and the tragic events that followed. Strong language.
Download Into Thin Air, DB44525
Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883 by Simon Winchester.
Author of The Professor and the Madman (RC 46906) chronicles "the most devastating volcanic event in modern recorded human history," a cataclysmic eruption near Java in the Indian Ocean that killed 36,000 people. Explains some of the disaster's political, religious, economic, psychological, and scientific consequences.
Download Krakatoa, DB55879
The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men against the Sea by Sebastian Junger.
Read by Bill Wallace. Reading time 8 hours 17 minutes.
Recounts the 1991 loss at sea of the New England fishing boat Andrea Gail in the "perfect storm" that resulted from the explosive convergence of several high-energy weather fronts. Depicts a fisherman's harsh life and gives a likely account of the vessel's final hour before sinking. Vividly portrays failed rescue efforts and people drowning.
Download the Perfect Storm, DB44751
The Raging Sea: The Powerful Account of the Worst Tsunami in U.S. History by Dennis M. Powers
Read by Michael Russotto. Reading time 12 hours 1 minute.
Professor describes the tragedy of Good Friday, March 27, 1964, when four waves spawned by an Alaskan earthquake hit Crescent City, California, and devastated the town. Interviews survivors and reveals tales of heroism and grief as eleven people lost their lives and the area was ravaged. 2005.
Download The Raging Sea, DB60836
Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America by John M. Barry.
Read by Chuck Young. Reading time 18 hours 54 minutes.
An account of the catastrophic flood of 1927, in which at least one thousand Americans were killed and another million displaced by the swollen Mississippi River. Traces early engineering efforts at river control, which set the stage for the disaster. Explores the flood's far-reaching social, political, and economic implications.
Download Rising Tide, DB46388
A Wall of White: The True Story of Heroism and Survival in the Face of a Deadly Avalanche by Jennifer Woodlief
Read by Theresa Conkin. Reading time 9 hours 33 minutes.
Chronicles the avalanche that struck the Alpine Meadows ski resort near Lake Tahoe on March 31, 1982, and killed seven people. Describes how search-and-rescue teams and their dogs found Anna Conrad after she was buried for five days. Some strong language. 2009.
Download A Wall of White,DB71805
The Way of a Ship: A Square-Rigger Voyage in the Last Days of Sail by Derek Lundy
Read by Jack Fox. Reading time 15 hours 14 minutes.
Author of Godforsaken Sea (RC 50690) recreates the adventures of his great-great-uncle Benjamin Lundy, a Cape Horn seaman during the 1880s. Derek Lundy portrays the challenges and perils Benjamin and the crew most likely faced while learning firsthand the "eternal lessons of the sea." 2002.
Download The Way of a Ship, DB58702
When the Mississippi Ran Backwards: Empire, Intrigue, Murder, and the New Madrid Earthquakes by Jay Feldman.
Read by Jill Fox. Reading time 10 hours 47 minutes.
Chronicles a series of catastrophic earthquakes in the Mississippi River Valley from 1811 to 1812 that devastated the New Madrid frontier settlement and temporarily reversed the Mississippi's flow. Links the seismologic activity to the Indian Wars, a slave murder committed by Thomas Jefferson's nephews, and the War of 1812.
Download When the Mississippi Ran Backwards, DB60365
The White Cascade: The Great Northern Railway Disaster and America's Deadliest Avalanche by Gary Krist
Read by Derald Breneman. Reading time 13 hours .
Prizewinning novelist chronicles events surrounding the 1910 snowslide that buried two Great Northern Railway trains in Washington's Cascade Mountains. Describes the plight of passengers and workmen trapped in a blizzard for days preceding the deadly avalanche--which killed a hundred people--and details rescue and recovery efforts. 2007.
Download The White Cascade, DB64718