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Encyclopedia of Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones covers all major aspects of tropical cyclone activity. More than 200 extensively cross-referenced A-Z entries define technical terms and offer narrative accounts of history's major tropical storms. Coverage includes: meteorological terms and instruments relating to these storms; biographical data on key figures in the history of hurricane scholarship; geographical highlights; the history of individual storms and their effects on civilization; the culture and folklore of cyclonic storms; methods of tracking and data accumulation; and an analysis of tropical storm structure and development. A 700-year chronology of global tropical cyclone activity is included, as are detailed appendixes on such subjects as plotting and tracking approaching hurricane and other storm systems.
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The new edition of this work updates and augments the existing information on storms as well as adds data on storms that have occurred since the publication of the first edition (LJ9/15/98). Written by Longshore, a historian with education and experience in emergency management, the work contains over 460 entries, almost 200 more than the earlier edition. Some entries from the earlier edition have changed, but most of that content remains the same. The encyclopedia contains alphabetically arranged reviews of the history, science, and human impacts of tropical cyclones throughout the world. Its primary focus is Atlantic and eastern Pacific storms; coverage of western Pacific and Indian Ocean storms is spotty. Illustrations, mainly black-and-white photographs and maps, are sparse. There are four appendixes, a less-than-complete bibliography, and a 16-page index. Only 13 new references were added to the bibliography in this edition. Within the text, references to other entries in the encyclopedia are capitalized; some Seereferences are also included. At times, the content is confusing. Storms with the same name that occurred during different years may be described in one entry or separately. The Galveston Hurricane of 1900, for example, is listed as the Great Galveston Hurricane in the index; no Seereference is included in the section on Texas hurricanes. There are also some omissions, for example, Hurricane Grace (1991), which merged into the system that became the Perfect Storm, Hurricane Catarina (Brazil, 2004), and many Australasian typhoons and cyclones. Note that Hurricane Catarina was one of the few recorded hurricanes to occur south of the equator (it hitBrazil in 2004).
Gr 8 Up -Quirky language such as "Meteorological Armageddon" (referring to hysterical media coverage of some storms) leavens the scientific coverage in this detailed work. The approximately 400 alphabetical articles (80 of them new since the 2000 edition) lean heavily toward descriptions of events. For example, the fact-filled article on Hurricane Katrina covers more than five pages (although most selections are less than one page long). There are also shorter entries on lesser-known storms, listing date, strength, death toll, and other pertinent details, where known. Other entries cover related science, scientists, history, places, the human impact of these tragedies, and various practices surrounding them. Some choices are puzzling. For example, the article on Katrina barely mentions global warming, whereas the "hurricane party" entry uses a quarter of a page to list songs that might be played at such a celebration. There are plentiful black-and-white maps, satellite images, diagrams, and photographs. Access is aided by the listing of storms by name and by place. The useful appendixes include safety procedures, a chronology of events, another listing by storm name (but with less detail than in the main body), a short list of Web sites that track tropical cyclones, and a lengthy bibliography including both scholarly and popular resources.-Henrietta Thornton-Verma, School Library Journal
Posted July 31, 2009
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