The Wave: in Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean

The Wave: in Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean

Microfilm Doubleday

By (author) Susan Casey

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  • Publisher: Random House Inc
  • Format: Microfilm | 326 pages
  • Dimensions: 147mm x 239mm x 36mm | 612g
  • Publication date: 14 September 2010
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0767928849
  • ISBN 13: 9780767928847
  • Illustrations note: Illustrations (some col.), maps (some col.)
  • Sales rank: 67,296

Product description

From Susan Casey, bestselling author of "The Devil's Teeth," an astonishing book about colossal, ship-swallowing rogue waves and the surfers who seek them out. For centuries, mariners have spun tales of gargantuan waves, 100-feet high or taller. Until recently scientists dis-missed these stories--waves that high would seem to violate the laws of physics. But in the past few decades, as a startling number of ships vanished and new evidence has emerged, oceanographers realized something scary was brewing in the planet's waters. They found their proof in February 2000, when a British research vessel was trapped in a vortex of impossibly mammoth waves in the North Sea--including several that approached 100 feet. As scientists scramble to understand this phenomenon, others view the giant waves as the ultimate challenge. These are extreme surfers who fly around the world trying to ride the ocean's most destructive monsters. The pioneer of extreme surfing is the legendary Laird Hamilton, who, with a group of friends in Hawaii, figured out how to board suicidally large waves of 70 and 80 feet. Casey follows this unique tribe of peo-ple as they seek to conquer the holy grail of their sport, a 100--foot wave. In this mesmerizing account, the exploits of Hamilton and his fellow surfers are juxtaposed against scientists' urgent efforts to understand the destructive powers of waves--from the tsunami that wiped out 250,000 people in the Pacific in 2004 to the 1,740-foot-wave that recently leveled part of the Alaskan coast. Like Jon Krakauer's "Into Thin Air, The Wave "brilliantly portrays human beings confronting nature at its most ferocious.

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Author information

SUSAN CASEY, the author of the "New York Times "bestseller "The Devil's Teeth," is the Editor-in-Chief of "O, the Oprah Magazine," and has also served as creative director of "Outside "magazine.

Review quote

"[Susan Casey] examines big waves from every angle, and goes in deep with those who know the phenomenon most intimately....Casey makes a convincing, entertaining case (nifty cliffhangers and all) that there is a heretofore little-known monster in our midst....She pushes the scientists on the big question.....Casey is fluent in 'gnarly' and proficient in 'wonk, ' and she writes lucidly so the rest of us can come along for the ride. Her wonderfully vivid, kinetic narrative....offers a prescient vision of watery perils--and sometimes, bittersweet triumphs....Amid the images of demolition, Casey hangs on to the magic and beauty of waves."--"New York Times Book Review" "You think "Jaws" made you fear the ocean? In this adrenaline rush of a book, Casey....describes 'nature's biggest tantrum'....Her eerie, majestic descriptions...make THE WAVE an unsettling thrill ride that's as terrifying as it is awe inspiring."--"People " "Immensely powerful, beautiful, addictive and, yes, incredibly thrilling....takes the reader into the hearts and minds of the world's renowned surfers....Through the eyes of the surfers, readers get a remarkable sense of how they choose their waves, the skill that it takes to rocket across them, what it feels like to fall, what happens when surfers and Jet Skis are flung into coral reefs, what it's like to be rolled and pounded by tons of water, and what it is like physically and psychologically to be held under for too long - how some surfers make it back to the surface, and others drown. But "The Wave" is far more than a book about surfing. Casey's quest is also to understand the characteristics of giant waves and rogue waves. She explores the impact giant waves have on ships, oil rigs, fishing boats and passenger ships.....Casey explains the science of waves in a straightforward but always engaging manner.....Casey also illuminates recent mind-boggling discoveries.....Casey unlocks the mysteries of waves in her fascinating an