SUDDEN SEA: The Great Hurricane of 1938

R. A. Scotti, Author . Little, Brown $24.95 (279p) ISBN 978-0-316-73911-5

Former journalist and mystery novelist Scotti successfully applies her skills in both genres to this detailed retelling of the 1938 hurricane that ripped across seven Northeastern states and killed 682 people, "the most destructive natural disaster in U.S. history—worse than the San Francisco earthquake, the Chicago fire, or any Mississippi flood." Although the enormity of the destruction has been written about before, Scotti focuses on "a few experiences that seem representative of many more" through interviews with hurricane survivors, their families and friends, as well as previously published recollections by survivors, including the late Katharine Hepburn. Scotti's detailed look at the general extent of the hurricane's destruction adds poignancy to individual stories, such as those of Joseph Matoes, who sees his children swept away from their school bus as they are battered by huge waves; Lillian Tetlow and Jack Kinney, two sweethearts who survive a storm that destroys Napatree, R.I., and who later marry; and Charles Pierce, a "green and unsure" junior forecaster for a woefully underprepared U.S. Weather Bureau (now the National Weather Service) who stands against his experienced superiors as the only forecaster to recognize the danger of the hurricane. Scotti also skillfully presents the details of a hurricane, although she reminds us that "after decades of study and with all the technological tools of the trade... we still cannot predict a hurricane more than twenty-four hours in advance." (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 08/04/2003
Release date: 09/01/2003
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-316-83211-3
Open Ebook - 978-0-316-05478-2
Hardcover - 400 pages - 978-0-7862-5899-4
Open Ebook - 154 pages - 978-0-316-14948-8
Show other formats
FORMATS
Discover what to read next
TIP SHEET
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X
X