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A Dangerous Place: California's Unsettling Fate

A DANGEROUS PLACE: CALIFORNIA'S UNSETTLING FATE

by: Reisner, Marc
Format: Paperback

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Product Description Writing with a signature command of his subject and with compelling resonance, Marc Reisner leads us through California’s improbable rise from a largely desert land to the most populated state in the nation, fueled by an economic engine more productive than all of Africa. Reisner believes that the success of this last great desert civilization hinges on California’s denial of its own inescapable fate: Both the Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay areas sit astride two of the most violently seismic zones on the planet. The earthquakes that have already rocked California were, according to Reisner, a mere prologue to a future cataclysm that will result in immense destruction. Concluding with a hypothetical but chillingly realistic description of what such a disaster would look like, A Dangerous Place mixes science, history, and cultural commentary in a haunting work of profound importance. Review "Reisner manages the nearly impossible feat of explaining geopolitical history, hydro-engineering, plate tectonics and comparative seismology in an engaging, delightfully literate fashion. This important book will appeal to many, including those outside the Golden State. Environmentalists will naturally go for it, but Reisner's witty, concise prose will attract general readers, too." — Publishers Weekly "This posthumous work by the author of the award-winning Cadillac Desert is a fitting tribute to his environmental concerns and the power of his writing." —Library Journal "Nothing Stephen King has ever written is nearly as frightening." —The San Diego Union-Tribune From the Back Cover In "A Dangerous Place, Marc Reisner, the author of "Cadillac Desert, the classic history of the American West and its fatal dependence on water, returns to the subject that never ceased to seduce him: California. Writing with his signature command of his subject and with compelling resonance, Reisner leads us through California's improbable history and rise from a largely desert land to the most populated state in the nation, fueled by an economic engine more productive than all of Africa. Reisner believes that the achievement of this, the last great desert civilization, hinges on California's denial of its own inescapable fate. Both the Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay areas sit astride two of the most violently seismic zones on the planet. The earthquakes that have already rocked California were, according to Reisner, mere prologues to a future cataclysm that will result in destruction of such magnitude that the only recourse will be to rebuild from the ground up. Reisner concludes "A Dangerous Place with a hypothetical but chillingly realistic description of such a disaster and its horrifying aftereffects. About the Author Marc Reisner worked for many years at the Natural Resources Defense Council. His Cadillac Desert was a National Book Critics Circle Award nominee. He died in 2000. Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved. The most striking thing about modern California is not that it has transformed itself, in two long human lifespans, from a seamless wilderness into the most populous and urban of the fifty American states. Nor is it that one in two people living west of the hundredth meridian--which is to say, in half the landmass of the United States--now resides in California. Nor is it even that so many people are pouring in from everywhere that California is about to become the first state without a white--at least Caucasian--majority. All that is peripheral to the most fateful upshot of this state's century and a half of frantic growth: most of its inhabitants have settled, and will continue to settle, where they shouldn't have. A swarm of Californians outnumbering the population of Texas has crammed into two small spaces: the Los Angeles Basin and the San Francisco Bay Area. These two regions, each roughly the size of the tiniest eastern states, now rank second and fourth among the nation's m

Details

Product Code: 9780142003831
ISBN: 0142003832
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: 2004-07-27
Number of Pages: 208 pages
Languages: english
Edition: Reprint
Dimension: 5.04 x 0.55 x 7.87 inches
Shipping Weight: 0.35 pounds