Great Quake - Henry Fountain

Staff Pick

If you’re like me, you pick up Henry Fountain’s new book, The Great Quake, and you immediately assume it’s about some California disaster. It’s not. This one happened in Alaska on March 27, 1964. At 9.2 on the Richter scale, it was the biggest earthquake ever recorded in North America and the second most powerful in world history. The human tragedy and physical damage of it all are dramatically and vividly captured by Fountain, a New York Times reporter, but that’s only part of the story. Fountain also explores how this major natural disaster ended up spurring scientific inquiry, largely thanks to the efforts of one individual, a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey named George Plafker. The study that Plafker produced to explain what caused the earthquake in Alaska helped confirm idea of plate tectonics, which was then a controversial notion but is now widely accepted.

The Great Quake: How the Biggest Earthquake in North America Changed Our Understanding of the  Planet By Henry Fountain Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101904060
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Crown - August 8th, 2017