Island on Fire by Alexandra Witze audiobook

Island on Fire: The Extraordinary Story of a Forgotten Volcano That Changed the World

By Alexandra Witze  and Jeff Kanipe
Read by John Lescault

6.15 Hours 06/04/2019 Unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
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    ISBN: 9781982586812

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Can a single explosion change the course of history? An eruption at the end of the eighteenth century led to years of climate change while igniting famine, disease, and even perhaps revolution. Laki is Iceland’s largest volcano—and its most fearsome. Its eruption in 1783 is one of history’s great, untold natural disasters. Spewing out sun-blocking ash and then a poisonous fog for eight long months, the effects of the eruption lingered across the world for years. It caused the deaths of people as far away as the Nile and created catastrophic conditions throughout Europe. Island on Fire is the story not only of a single eruption but the people whose lives it changed, the dawn of modern volcanology, as well as the history―and potential―of other super-volcanoes like Laki around the world. And perhaps most pertinently, in the wake of the eruption of another Icelandic volcano, Eyjafjallajökull, which closed European air space in 2010, acclaimed science writers Witze and Kanipe look at what might transpire should Laki erupt again in our lifetime.

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Summary

Summary

Can a single explosion change the course of history? An eruption at the end of the eighteenth century led to years of climate change while igniting famine, disease, and even perhaps revolution.

Laki is Iceland’s largest volcano—and its most fearsome. Its eruption in 1783 is one of history’s great, untold natural disasters. Spewing out sun-blocking ash and then a poisonous fog for eight long months, the effects of the eruption lingered across the world for years. It caused the deaths of people as far away as the Nile and created catastrophic conditions throughout Europe.

Island on Fire is the story not only of a single eruption but the people whose lives it changed, the dawn of modern volcanology, as well as the history―and potential―of other super-volcanoes like Laki around the world. And perhaps most pertinently, in the wake of the eruption of another Icelandic volcano, Eyjafjallajökull, which closed European air space in 2010, acclaimed science writers Witze and Kanipe look at what might transpire should Laki erupt again in our lifetime.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“[A] tour de force: terrific storytelling that reveals our vulnerability to nature’s most destructive forces.” BBC (London)
“Interweaving information compiled by naturalists and astronomers of the day (and even Benjamin Franklin, who was in Paris during the eruption) with interviews with modern-day scientists and historians, the authors provide a captivating overview of the eruption.” Science News
“A compelling and engrossing story of Laki and its worldwide impact…[with] facts and examples that make their specific story one with implications for modern readers.” Seattle Times
“The official death tally in Iceland from Laki was around 9,000, but some experts suggest the global toll was much higher…Because a Laki-scale eruption happens on average every 200 to 500 years in Iceland, a similar event is not unlikely.” Scientific American
“A brilliant book. While Iceland’s volcanology became front-page news in 2010 when Eyjafjallajökull grounded flights across Europe for almost a week, Kanipe and Witze situate that recent eruption in the country’s tragic volcanic history and volatile geology.” Pacific Standard
“This book, written for a nontechnical audience, does a very good job of describing the Laki eruption and its aftermath, relying heavily on historic firsthand observations. The endnotes will guide interested readers to the more technical literature on the subject.” Choice
“Were it just a story of one volcano, that would be engrossing enough: by including assessments and natural histories of others, this wide-ranging book holds the potential to appeal to a wide audience.” Midwest Book Review
“Witze and Kanipe look at the magnitude of that eruption and its tremendous consequences, examining journals kept by locals and piecing together substantial time lines to detail events…Chapters on geology and the short- and long-term effects of volcanic eruptions add depth to Witze and Kanipe’s discussion, rounding out a work that serves as a valuable reminder of just how much we remain at Mother Nature’s mercy.” Publishers Weekly

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Alexandra Witze

Author Bio: Alexandra Witze

Alexandra Witze is an award-winning science journalist and correspondent for the journal Nature. Her reporting has taken her from the North Pole to report on climate change to the jungles of Guatemala to cover Maya archaeology and to China’s quake-ravaged Sichuan province. Island on Fire is her first book.

Titles by Author

Author Bio: Jeff Kanipe

Author Bio: Jeff Kanipe

Jeff Kanipe is an experienced science writer and the author of a number of books on astronomy including Chasing Hubble’s Shadows and The Cosmic Connection. He has an asteroid, 84447 Jeffkanipe, named after him.

Titles by Author

Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction
Runtime: 6.15
Audience: Adult
Language: English