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Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded

Winchester, Simon

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Simon Winchester's brilliant chronicle of the destruction of the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883 charts the birth of our modern world. He tells the story of the unrecognized genius who beat Darwin to the discovery of evolution; of Samuel Morse, his code and how rubber allowed the world to talk; of Alfred Wegener, the crack-pot German explorer and father of geology. In breathtaking detail he describes how one island and its inhabitants were blasted out of existence and how colonial society was turned upside-down in a cataclysm whose echoes are still felt to this day.

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It may seem a stretch to connect a volcanic eruption with civil and religious unrest in Indonesia today, but Simon Winchester makes a compelling case. Krakatoa tells the frightening tale of the biggest volcanic eruption in history using a blend of gentle geology and narrative history. Krakatoa erupted at a time when technologies like the telegraph were becoming commonplace and Asian trade routes were being expanded by northern European companies. This bustling colonial backdrop provides an effective canvas for the suspense leading up to August 27th, 1883, when the nearby island of Krakatoa would violently vaporize. Winchester describes the eruption through the eyes of its survivors, and readers will be as horrified and mesmerized as eyewitnesses were as the death toll reached nearly 40,000 (almost all of whom died from tsunamis generated by the unimaginably strong shock waves of the eruption). Ships were thrown miles inshore, endless rains of hot ash engulfed those towns not drowned by 100 foot waves, and vast rafts of pumice clogged the hot sea. The explosion was heard thousands of miles away, and the eruption's shock wave traveled around the world seven times. But the book's biggest surprise is not the riveting catalog of the volcano's effects; rather, it is Winchester's contention that the Dutch abandonment of their Indonesian colonies after the disaster left local survivors to seek comfort in radical Islam, setting the stage for a volatile future for the region. --Therese Littleton

About the Author:

Simon Winchester was born and educated in England, has lived in Africa, India and Asia, and now divides his time between the US and Scotland. Having reported from almost everywhere during an award-winning twenty-year career as a Guardian foreign correspondent, he is currently the Asia-Pacific editor for Conde Nast Traveler and contributes to a number of American magazines, as well as to the Daily Telegraph, the Spectator and the BBC. He is the author of several bestselling works of non-fiction.

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Winchester, Simon Author
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ISBN 10: 0141005173 ISBN 13: 9780141005171
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Soun Vannithone (illustrator). 196 x 128 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Simon Winchester s brilliant chronicle of the destruction of the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883 charts the birth of our modern world. He tells the story of the unrecognized genius who beat Darwin to the discovery of evolution; of Samuel Morse, his code and how rubber allowed the world to talk; of Alfred Wegener, the crack-pot German explorer and father of geology. In breathtaking detail he describes how one island and its inhabitants were blasted out of existence and how colonial society was turned upside-down in a cataclysm whose echoes are still felt to this day. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141005171

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Soun Vannithone (illustrator). 196 x 128 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Simon Winchester s brilliant chronicle of the destruction of the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883 charts the birth of our modern world. He tells the story of the unrecognized genius who beat Darwin to the discovery of evolution; of Samuel Morse, his code and how rubber allowed the world to talk; of Alfred Wegener, the crack-pot German explorer and father of geology. In breathtaking detail he describes how one island and its inhabitants were blasted out of existence and how colonial society was turned upside-down in a cataclysm whose echoes are still felt to this day. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141005171

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Book Description 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1st. 129mm x 198mm x 27mm. Paperback. Simon Winchester's brilliant chronicle of the destruction of the Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883 charts the birth of our modern world. He tells the story of the unrecognized genius w.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 448 pages. 0.309. Bookseller Inventory # 9780141005171

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Book Description Penguin, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New Book. Shipping: Once your order has been confirmed and payment received, your order will then be processed. The book will be located by our staff, packaged and despatched to you as quickly as possible. From time to time, items get mislaid en route. If your item fails to arrive, please contact us first. We will endeavour to trace the item for you and where necessary, replace or refund the item. Please do not leave negative feedback without contacting us first. All orders will be dispatched within two working days. If you have any quesions please contact us. Bookseller Inventory # V9780141005171

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, 2004. paperback. Book Condition: New. *** NEW COPY *** TITLE SHIPPED FROM UK *** Binding paperback Chronicles the destruction of Indonesian island of Krakatoa in 1883. This book describes how one island and its inhabitants were blasted out of existence and how colonial society was turned upside-down in a cataclysm. Simon Winchester's brilliant. Bookseller Inventory # 0141005173

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