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July-August 2015

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Book Review: Two Accounts of Superstorm Sandy

Superstorm: Nine Days Inside Hurricane Sandy by Kathryn Miles; Hardcover: 368 pages; Dutton, 2014; ISBN-10: 0525954406

Storm Surge: Hurricane Sandy, Our Changing Climate, and Extreme Weather of the Past and Future by Adam Sobel; Hardcover, 336 pages; HarperWave, 2014; ISBN-10: 0062304763

Superstorm Sandy, which struck during late October 2012, was one of the most intense cyclones to ever strike the United States East Coast. This massive, hybrid storm—a violent nor'easter with a secluded tropical core—set records in terms of size, minimum central pressure, and diverse weather impacts. These effects spanned 22 states and included widespread heavy rain, wind gusts approaching 90 mph, deadly storm surge (particularly along the New Jersey shore and New York City), heavy snow in the central Appalachians, and giant waves on the Great Lakes. The cyclone became the second costliest weather disaster in U.S. history, right behind Hurricane Katrina. 

Weatherwise Contributing Editor JEFFREY B. HALVERSON is Professor of Geography at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.       

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