Rain A Natural History weaves together planetary science "geology early earth history meteorology human history cultural studies travel stories and even poetry into an entertaining and "early earth history meteorology human history cultural studies travel stories and even poetry into an entertaining and account of rain and our relationship to it The book is beautifully written vivid sometimes humorous and almost poetic without being flowery It s easy to fall under its spell I especially enjoyed all the history and the sections on how depictions or evocations of rain have enhanced various works of literature music painting and moviesI received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through LibraryThing Review opinions are mine I just love books like this Truly a fascinating topic when ou think about it Rain really plays such a huge part of so many aspects of our lives Beautiful and well researched book I enjoyed it so very much I think I may actually reread it then gift it to another rain lover This book has a lot of great interesting information about drought flood rivers and their natural cycles landscape cities and rain agriculture and rain the making of raincoats and umbrellas attempts to use weather in warfare At times I was frustrated with the jumpy movement from one thing to another and because of that I am between a 3 and a 4 review wise There didn t seem to be a clear or meaningful structure in place But I did enjoy what I learned from it and also left it feeling uite distressed about the acidification of oceans and other bodies of water and rain too That is a kind of distress that is important and worth feeling and the phenomenon worth understanding a bit better There are endless ways the subjects in here could be approached and I hope another similarly themed book is written soon and perhaps focuses on ecosystemic weather patterns and phenomenon and less on umbrellas and raincoats I am the target audience for this book I ve sat in the rain at Arthur Ashe stadium for two days in a row and I did this for two US Open tournaments I am a gardener who doesn t use chemical fertilizers herbicides or even the garden hose I am a baker who knows that meringues are puffier on dry days I have curly hair that blossoms into a cloud at the first hint of mist and there still isn t a rainy day that I don t raise my face to the sky to catch the dropsAnd Five fags a day yet andet this book bored me It s a potpourri of rain facts Barnett begins with the formation of the Earth which was interesting Then she briefly touches on different cultures associations on rain about a paragraph for each culture s story about the rain Then there s a long chapter that s really product placement for Mackintosh raincoats Then a long chapter that s really product placement for Mackintosh raincoats Then s a chapter on rain in literature that s filled with conclusory statements What exactly were Emily Dickinson s best poems Who chose them There s just too much going on and this half read like a stream of consciousnessBarnett really hits her stride when she starts detailing the effects of climate change The book would have been better if she d focused on the importance of unpollu. Rain is elemental mysterious precious destructiveIt is the subject of countless poems and paintings; the top of the weather report; the source of the world's water Yet this is the first book to tell the story of rain Cynthia Barnett's Rain begins four billion ears ago with the torrents that filled the oceans and builds to the storms of climate change It weaves together science the true shape of a raindrop the mysteries of frog and fish rains with the human story of our ambition to control rain from ancient rain dances to the 2203 miles of levees that attempt. .
read Rain A Natural and Cultural History.
Ted rain rather than stories about rain and the devastation of polluted rainwater and the changes in rainfall patterns globally I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher and I must admit I was a little wary at first how interesting can ou make rain Very interesting it turns out First of all the book is beautifully written It is lyrical without being silly or overwrought and the huge range of topics covered flow easily and smoothly from one to the next without feeling rushed or ramblingAs for the substance of the book I feel that Barnett has written rain s definitive biography She explores how rain has shaped religion culture fashion law art music and anything else ou could think of Into each life some rain must fallSome days must by dark and drearyBe still sad heart and cease repining Behind the clouds is the sun still shiningLongfellowI was gifted this book through the first reads program at Goodreads I love the rain and the color green That is why I live in the Pacific Northwest What did this book teach meI didn t know what I didn t know about rain but it seems it was a huge amount of information I learned about the ancient peoples dependence on weather For Their Crops And their crops and water I learned about the first weather forecasters and Daniel Defoe s obsession with collecting rain water numbers I learned About The First Attempts the first attempts creating rain by blasting the skies because during the Civil War soldiers observed the rain after a battle I read about rainmakers and how they conned people and cities and governments into paying them huge amounts of money for rain that the probabilities were on the conman s side Ms Barnett tells us of the literary role rain has in books poems and movies Charles Dickens wrote about the rain a lot because he lived during the Little Ice Age where it rained an enormous amount Mary Shelley s Frankenstein was written in the ear with no summer Author s state that the rain helps them write because nice weather is too distracting I learned about the political conseuences of rain legislation and the results if no action is taken to halt the climates change This book is well researched and their are numerous pages of notes in the backMost of all I remembered why I love rain so much and why we on Earth need it so as to not become Venus in the future I had a professor in grad school who once asked Why are there so few good books on the weather Finally here s a good book on the weather all about rain just enough too much too little and how rain affects human civilization culture and survivalThe writing is crisp and engaging The stories are compelling and interestingMany of the historic effects of rain or lack thereof are presented through the experiences of real people and events You will learn about the initial "disdain of the English for the umbrella and then their love affair with "of the English for the umbrella and then their love affair with why The Piper in the Wind you hardly ever see traditional bamboo and paper umbrellas in Japan any efforts to produce wearable truly waterproof clothing westward expansion To straitjacket the Mississippi River It offers a glimpse of our founding forecaster Thomas Jefferson who measured every drizzle long before modern meteorology Two centuries later rainy skies would help inspire Morrissey’s mopes and Kurt Cobain’s grunge Rain is also a travelogue taking readers to Scotland to tell the surprising story of the mackintosh raincoat and to India where villagers extract the scent of rain from the monsoon drenched earth and turn it into perfume Now after thousands ofears spent praying for rain or worshiping it; burning witche. Cross the American Great Plains during a time of moisture and misplaced faith in the fact that the human activity of breaking sod brings rain only to be dashed by misplaced faith in the fact that the human activity of breaking sod brings rain only to be dashed by Dust Bowl a This could be a dry subject ha ha but Barnett s wide scope and engaging storytelling bring the wonder mystery and profound importance of of this seemingly ordinary phenomenon to life Considering rain from the perspective of history science music literature politics etc Barnett explores her subject through the stories of a farmer on the Great Plains TV weathermen raincoat makers an anthropologist exploring ancient Mesopotamia a king convinced that witches are thwarting his efforts to bring his bride across a stormy sea a patent lawyer heading a project to blast rain out of the sky with siege guns left over from the Civil War a shyster traveling the country with a mysterious chemical brew guaranteed to draw rain a whole series of writers who are inspired by and who use rain in their works movie makers Indian fragrance manufacturers using techniues thousands of ears old to capture the scent of rain an ichthyologist at the American Museum of Natural History collecting stories of fish and frog rains engineers struggling to restore the South Florida water system climate scientists creating models to predict and plan for extreme weather events a visit to a village in India which may be losing its claim to be the wettest place on earth and many many The variety of angles on rain maintains the subject s appeal and Barnett avoids bogging down in scientific complexities her two earlier award winning books Blue Revolution Unmaking America s Water Crisis and Mirage Florida and the Vanishing Water of the Eastern US are on water systems issues she definitely knows her stuff but clearly conveys the essence of the problems she is describing Her sentences occasionally become a bit circuitous but for the most part her writing is clear and lively I enjoyed this very much as a displaced and homesick Floridian I found the sections on my home state particularly interesting and give it 4 12 stars rounding up to 5 I love the subject and I hate to abandon this book but I cannot abide the author s style Everything is an overwrought metaphor a lame cultural reference or an outright clich Further there is no apparent organization of the material One idea follows another in Oh "HERE S ANOTHER INTERESTING THING FASHION "s another interesting thing fashion gave the book its eighth chance and am bailing irrevocably after a mere 35 pages because I don t want to finish a sentence that begins Think Indiana Jones It s one of the magical books I ve encountered since a long time Romance upon Rain An Enriching work by the author Cruising the Americas Western Europe and Indian subcontinent often it Covers cultural history of various civilizations BCEs and their rituals history of rain articles and weather forecasting geography and little science of planetary rainfall and speculations on climate change flood warnings with the upcoming frontiers What s for dinner Wilderness. S at change flood warnings with the upcoming frontiers What s for dinner Wilderness. S at stake to stop rain or sacrificing small children to bring it; mocking rain with irrigated agriculture and cities built in floodplains; even trying to blast rain out of the sky with mortars meant for war humanity has finally managed to change the rain Only not in ways we intended As climate change upends rainfall patterns and unleashes increasingly severe storms and drought Barnett shows rain to be a unifying force in a fractured world Too much and not nearly enough rain is a conversation we share and this is a book for everyone who has ever experienced ,