Sudden Sea:The Great Hurricane of 1938
by R.A. Scotti
About the Book
On the morning of September 21, 1938, the swath of coastline from Cape May to Cape Cod was the wealthiest and most populous in the world. By evening, it was a wasteland. Racing up the Atlantic Coast, the storm reached New York and New England ahead of hurricane warnings and struck with such intensity that it registered on seismographs in Alaska. Winds clocked at 186 miles per hour and stripped cars of their paint. Walls of water fifty feet high swept homes and entire families out to sea. Drawing on newspaper accounts, survivors’ testimony, and archival sources, R. A. Scotti has written an unforgettable account of an ocean rising up to wreak total destruction on a way of life the world would never see again.
About the Author
R.A. Scotti grew up in Rhode Island hearing stories about the Great Hurricane of 1938. She is the author of a number of thrillers and novels of international espionage and was a former journalist at the Providence Journal and Newark Star-Ledger. Scotti’s first fiction novel, The Kiss of Judas, was published in 1984, followed by The Devil’s Own, The Hammer’s Eye, and For Love of Sarah. Her first work of nonfiction, Cradle Song, is an account of the birth and death of her son Ciro, who suffered from a serious illness and lived only to sixteen months of age. Following Sudden Sea, Scotti published Basilica in 2007, a history of the building of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. Scotti’s interest in St. Peter’s led her to research the theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre in 1911; her account of it was then published as Vanished Smile, in 2009.
Hurricane and Weather Forecasting through the Ages
Monday, June 19, 2017, 7:00 pm
Main Library – 111 Library St NE
Getting an accurate weather forecast is more than just a matter of comfort and convenience—sometimes it can mean the difference between life and death. Technology to predict the weather has evolved dramatically through the past century. Join WOOD TV 8 Meteorologist Terri DeBoer as she explores the increased accuracy of weather forecasting, including severe weather and hurricane tracking. She will also give an overview of how technology has made weather broadcasts a much more informative and entertaining experience for the viewer.
Chasing Winds: a Breezy History of Storm Chasing Culture
Thursday, June 22, 2017, 7:00 pm
Main Library – 111 Library St NE
Storm chasing has become a widespread activity over the years, involving amateur weather observers, photographers, and meteorologists. Beginning with one individual in 1956, the history of storm chasing includes humble roots, personal adventure, scientific achievement, and tragedy. The culture fosters a fascination with extremes in atmospheric phenomena. Journalist and filmmaker Blake Naftel will share visual excerpts centered in and around West Michigan and Kent County. Historical tornadoes and severe weather events will also be included in the presentation.
Threats Facing the Lake Michigan Shoreline
Thursday, July 13, 2017, 7:00 pm
Main Library – 111 Library Street NE
Now is a time of great change for the Great Lakes. After almost 15 years of relatively low lake levels, water levels throughout the Great Lakes have risen very rapidly over the past three years. Low water levels produced wide, growing, and stable looking beaches, which have disappeared with rising water levels. At the same time, storms have increased in frequency and intensity, with hurricane strength winds becoming more commonplace. The number of fatalities due to dangerous waves and currents has also risen. Join Guy A. Meadows, Professor of Sustainable Marine Engineering and Director of the Great Lakes Research Center at Michigan Technological University, to learn how new instrumentation, monitoring platforms, and advanced numerical modeling can predict damage should a disaster occur.
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