The Tsunami of 2004: Catastrophe in Southern Asia

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Author Gail Stewart has written a book on the 2004 Tsunami for the "Lucent's Overview" series. The book opens with an introduction to the terrible disaster that occurred on December 26, 2004. Chapter one describes what happened when "The Earth Shrugged for a Moment." The trigger for this catastrophe was an earthquake underwater in the Indian Ocean which sent massive tons of water to the ocean's surface. Violent waves spread out and rolled toward land, where it caused thousands of deaths and loss of homes and destruction of the surrounding land. The other five chapters talk about the grief and pain of losing family and friends, how the world came to the aid of the Tsunami victims, and what all this destruction means for the future. The rebuilding of parts of Southern Asia is monumental, due to the infrastructure of the region. Hundred of millions of dollars are needed to begin this rebuilding process. To prevent this tragedy from happening again, scientists believe that a warning system that is being used in the Pacific Ocean can warn residents in Southern Asia against future tidal waves. The 2004 tsunami caused homelessness and damage to the environment that will take years to correct. The region's economy has also been affected by loss of tourist trade and the slow- down of the fishing industry. Donations and the generous outpouring of compassion are helping tsunami victims recover. Black-and-white photographs, source notes, and further reading and internet sources are included. 2005, Lucent Books, Ages 10 up.
—Della A. Yannuzzi
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-Although several recent books on tsunamis include coverage of the December 2004 Indian Ocean disaster, this entire book focuses on it. Stewart includes accounts of the event itself and images of destruction, following up with the causes of tsunamis, inadequate warning systems, dealing with the casualties, continuing risks for survivors, response efforts, and rebuilding of the stricken areas. The book's real strength comes in its level of detail, as the author goes well beyond the obvious in exploring issues lacking or glossed over in most other accounts. For example, she discusses the need for special religious accommodations to allow for mass burials and cremations necessary for dealing with the number of dead and follows that with the effect on survivors' need to say good-bye to their loved ones through funerals and other ceremonies. Stewart also includes information on many survivors' psychological problems, such as fear of ghosts; the reasons for indigenous people's and animals' success in escaping the tsunami; the role of tourists in reporting the event immediately; and the effects of civil war in Sri Lanka and Indonesia on relief efforts. Compelling writing is enhanced with clear, informative, and often dramatic black-and-white photos. Well documented and indexed, this title is the best of the recent crop of tsunami books.-Jeffrey A. French, Willoughby-Eastlake Public Library, Willowick, OH Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781590188316
  • Publisher: Gale Group
  • Publication date: 7/13/2005
  • Series: Overview Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 112
  • Age range: 12 - 16 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Table of Contents

Introduction: "My Heart Doesn't Have Enough Room" 6
Chapter 1 "The Earth Shrugged for a Moment" 10
Chapter 2 "I Shall Never Forget the Screaming" 21
Chapter 3 Dealing with the Dead 35
Chapter 4 Grief, Guilt, and Pain 49
Chapter 5 The World Responds 62
Chapter 6 An Uncertain Future 76
Notes 90
Organizations to Contact 96
For Further Reading 98
Works Consulted 100
Index 105
Picture Credits 111
About the Author 112
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