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Publisher's Summary

Isaac's Storm meets The Age of Wonder in Lee Sandlin's Storm Kings, a riveting tale of the weather's most vicious monster - the super cell tornado - that recreates the origins of meteorology, and the quirky, pioneering, weather-obsessed scientists who helped change America.

©2013 Lee Sandlin (P)2013 Recorded Books

What listeners say about Storm Kings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

American Meteorological History at its best

I really enjoyed this book, which traces the development of understanding of tornados from the settlement of America through the invention of the Enhanced Fujita Scale. I 'm a self-proclaimed weather geek, who watches storm chasers' live streams in the spring, and hurricanes in the fall. Over the last year, I've listened to several books on major disasters and meteorologists, including 2 on the Galveston hurricane and one on Moore, OK tornadoes and the OK City weathermen. This book filled in a large amount of background of the development of US meteorology in general and of some of the huge personalities and conflicts involved. The author does an excellent job of keeping the story moving, weaving together historical detail and scientific theories. I enjoyed how he developed each major figure's personality, including their eccentricities. There are quite detailed descriptions of horrific tragedies, so this is not for the squeamish, but all important in context of learning about killer storms. The narrator was quite excellent; he let the story shine through and I never had to give him a thought - which is what I consider ideal for most non-fiction books. I would highly recommend this book for anyone who has more than a passing interest in meteorology, tornadoes, and the long path to scientific understanding and forecasting.

5 people found this helpful

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Exceptional book

I was in the mood for listening to some storm stories - and once I exhausted what was on Audible, I saw this title. It's not really storm stories, but more about the history of weather in the US. Yes, I understand that sounds boring - but it's really not. This book covers a lot of ground and moves at a good pace, it never really slows down and you're constantly learning new and interesting things. This is narrative history at its best - he's telling a story and it all comes together amazingly well. The book is also extremely well written.

I would say this book go well past the weather nerds out there and I'd say it's a must read for anyone interesting in American history in general. It fills in a gap I never knew existed -- and it's extremely entertaining to listen to.

Overall I'm right at 900 books on Audible now, all US and world history -- and this is absolutely a top tier book.

The reader does a great job. I listen to everything at 1.25x or 1.3x speed, and that's perfect for this, everything sounds very natural.

1 person found this helpful

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Storm kings is very tangible and fun listen

I work in research and listened to this book as I did experiments. I found it delightful that research and personalities have not changed over the centuries. I enjoyed the mix of science and biography. Who knew B Franklin was fascinated by electricity. I had heard the story of Tinker AFB but did not know the behind-the-scenes tail.
A must-read/listen!!