- Hardcover: 304 pages
- Publisher: Henry Holt & Company (10 May 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0805076468
- ISBN-13: 978-0805076462
- Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 2.8 x 24.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,914,953 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Big Weather: Chasing Tornadoes in the Heart of America Hardcover – 10 May 2005
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About the Author
University, Svenvold has won The Nation's "Discovery" Award for poetry. He lives in New York City with his wife, the novelist Martha McPhee, and two children, Livia and Jasper.
Top customer reviews
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and many others take a bit to get your head around if you are not familiar with the terms. Most of the book is about storm chasers
as opposed to actual descriptions of weather or tornadoes. Nice descriptions of the vastness of Nebraska and the difficulties of
travelling in the right directions to catch the centre of a tornado. Good chapter on the origins and development of the Weather
Channel and its importance in the lives of everyday Americans.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
There's an interesting story that Svenvold writes on in the book, the one where a storm chaser from Texas and a companion have a tornado form atop them, or at least very, very close to the vehicle that they were travelling in. Anyway, I went to the fellow's website, and sure enough, there was a video of the chase that Svenvold wrote of. In his account, Svenvold states that the female passenger was near-hysterical. But, when watching the video, the one that Svenvold gets his story from, you get the idea that she was less hysterical than merely quite excited -- and from there, the story takes a different tone than the one the way that it was written.
At any rate, there are some good descriptions of those that are involved with storm chasing. The good thing is that in this modern age, you can back check the author and see the other side of the story on the internet. From there, draw your own conclusions. Read the book, then hit Google.
I could have done without the preaching that this book does, and would enjoy reading another book about this subject by an author like Sebastian Junger or perhaps Jon Krakhauer. While Svenvold at times elicits their tones and narratives, he fails at their keen analysis and ability to keep asides relevant to the point at hand.
He successfully captured the characters and how they are driven to see and measure tornadoes and tornadic storms. I know, at the time, I was very much a member of that community. It is an inside look at what happens not only in Norman, but what happens every spring on the Great Plains.
This is my favorite book on the subject, an outsider who became an insider, accepted by all. Why this book never really caught on is a mystery to me, because he eloquently presents the characters and events without sensationalizing them. If you like Tornadoes, or are interested in them at all, buy this book.