Florida Hurricanes and Tropical Storms by John M. Williams and Iver W. Duedall is a well-written overview of the hurricanes and tropical storms which have struck the State of Florida from 1871 to 2001. Both authors are well qualified for the task. John M. Williams is a research affiliate with the Florida Institute of Technology and former staffer at the US National Hurricane Center. Iver W. Duedall is professor of oceanography and environmental sciences at Florida Institute of Technology.
The book provides listings and synopses of all recorded tropical storms to hit Florida during the period. The older storms are reviewed in 30 year groupings to 1990, and more detail is given to the storms of the last decade. In describing these latter storms, the authors often add their personal accounts of dealing with the storms. While there is little in the volume on hurricane science, the authors' intent was not to be the definitive hurricane book but to be the best unified collection of information on Florida-impacting storms.
The book is well illustrated and includes 32 colour plates, mostly of satellite imagery of the storms, and 40 pages of black and white photos and charts, including damage photos. The book includes a table listing the details of all storms during the period and tracking maps showing the storm paths as they crossed Florida and surrounding waters. The book includes a good summary of Hurricane Preparedness tips which I hope is read by those in hurricane regions and not skipped because it is titled Appendix I.
While the book lacks the detail on specific storms of some of the other recent books on Florida hurricanes which I have reviewed in the past months, Florida Hurricanes and Tropical Storms makes a good quick reference for those interested in Florida weather and hurricanes in general. If that is your interest, this book will fill a spot in your library and I recommend its addition.
Keith C. Heidorn, PhD
THE WEATHER DOCTOR
September 18, 2002