This book tells the story of the massive hurricane that destroyed Galveston, Texas in 1900, killing an estimated 6,000 to 10,000 people. It's also a really interesting look at the beginnings of the weather bureau (which, many incarnations later became NOAA, the government body that predicts our weather today) and the rivalry with Cuban meteorologists that pioneered hurricane detection and prediction.The stories include first-hand accounts from Isaac Cline and his brother Joseph, who were the weather bureau's observers in Galveston, as well as the accounts of several townspeople who survived the storm. Isaac and Joseph's stories show the hubris of the weather bureau at the time and the science of meteorology that was still in its infancy at the turn of the 20th Century. The naive assertions that Galveston (or any part of Texas) would never be hit by a hurricane is incredibly naive from a modern point of view. It's also mind-boggling to think about the arrogance of man at that time, to think that man could conquer the weather with steamships, railroads and buildings and that natural disasters had been rendered moot by inventions. That attitude is so foreign to most people today; we know that no matter how good our inventions are, nature is going to win from time to time and it's best for us to stay out of its way when we get advance warning. Unfortunately for the people of Galveston, the weather bureau let rivalries get in the way of good science and left the everyone without warning that the massive storm was about to hit the island. I recommend this book to Erik Larson fans, weather junkies and anyone who likes a good non-fiction book.