Friday, June 3, 2016

The Friday 56 (64) Rain: A Natural and Cultural History by Cynthia Barnett

The Friday 56 is a weekly meme hosted by Freda's Voice where every Friday you pick a book and turn to page 56 or 56%, and select a sentence or a few, as long as it's not a spoiler. For the full rules, visit the the page HERE
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Synopsis from Goodreads...

Rain is elemental, mysterious, precious, destructive...


It 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 years 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 2,203 miles of levees that attempt 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 of years spent praying for rain or worshiping it; burning witches at the 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 it...
""We live submerged at the bottom of an ocean of air." But when it came to describing and talking about the rain, neither science nor letters could ever sum it up quite so tidily. Rain's chaotic nature made it among the hardest parts of the weather to measure--and even to name."--Rain: A Natural and Cultural History by Cynthia Barnett
Comments: My pick this week is taken from page 75 instead of 56. I liked this paragraph better than the choices I had to choose from actually on page 56. Out of the nonfiction books I've read this year, I don't think I've picked up one that was specifically about rain. So far, I really like this book. What are you reading this week? 

19 comments:

  1. This sounds fascinating. My book this week is To Love a Wolf by Paige Dixon. Happy reading!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend! :-)

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  2. I am fascinated by rain, and not just because it is my nickname, lol. Rainy days are great for reading, the absence of rain is worrisome, but too much rain can also be a problem. Sounds like a book I'd enjoy. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend! :D

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  3. I'm thoroughly fascinated!!! Happy weekend!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend! :-)

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  4. This book sounds totally intriguing. I would love to read more. Enjoy!

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    1. From what I've read, it really is an intriguing look at rain. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend!

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  5. Wow, I'd like to hear more!! Sounds great!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend!

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  6. I love the rain and a whole book devoted to it sounds really interesting. I have a feeling it would be best to read while it is in fact raining. Happy Friday!

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    1. That's pretty much why I wanted to give this book a try. I've read a handful of nonfiction this year, but not specifically about rain. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend!

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  7. This sounds fascinating. I was watching the news all week and Texas is flooded while we, just a few states away, are in a hurricane draught. It's always fascinated me watching it rain next door and dry as a bone in my yard.

    My Friday 56 from Lady Renegades

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    1. I pretty much agree with you about the sometimes unpredictable weather. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend! :-)

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  8. Interesting choice. I never heard of this one, but you have my interest.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend!

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  9. Sounds interesting - I know I've never read a book about rain. Thanks for visiting my Friday meme earlier

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy your weekend! :D

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  10. This sounds like it could certainly be interesting. :)

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Comments are appreciated and always welcome. :)

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