Ice: The Nature, the History, and the Uses of an Astonishing Substance

Front Cover
University of Chicago Press, Jun 1, 2007 - History - 560 pages
8 Reviews
More brittle than glass, at times stronger than steel, at other times flowing like molasses, ice covers 10 percent of the earth’s land and 7 percent of its oceans.

Mariana Gosnell here explores the history and uses of ice in all its complexity, grandeur, and significance. From the freezing of Pleasant Lake in New Hampshire to the breakup of a Vermont river at the onset of spring, from the frozen Antarctic landscape that emperor penguins inhabit to the cold, watery route bowhead whales take between Arctic ice floes, Gosnell examines icebergs, icicles, and frostbite; sea ice and permafrost; ice on Mars and in the rings of Saturn; and several new forms of ice developed in labs. A record of the scientific surprises, cultural magnitude, and everyday uses of frozen water, Ice is a sparkling illumination of a substance whose ebbs and flows over time have helped form the world we live in.

 

“Gosnell travels to the ends of the earth, into the clouds and under the frozen sea to conduct her investigations . . . By the time you finish this remarkable book, you’ll never think about freezing and melting in quite the same way.”—New York Times Book Review

 

“To read Ice is to discover just how astonishing it is and how necessary.”—San Francisco Chronicle

 

“A bright, curious, omnidirectional tour that will entrance nature readers.”—Booklist

 

“An encyclopedic work with surprises on every page . . . . Illustrated with images of ice castles, skaters, and bubble-filled frozen sculpture, Gosnell’s book breathes life into the crystals dubbed ‘glorious spangles’ by Henry David Thoreau.”—Discover

  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - rivkat - LibraryThing

This is one of those single-item books that were in vogue before Malcolm Gladwell-esque One True Ideas took over, like Cod and Salt and Mauve and the like, except that this one is twice the length ... Read full review

Review: Ice: The Nature, the History, and the Uses of an Astonishing Substance

User Review  - Cameron - Goodreads

I've recently developed an interest in Alpine glaciers and this book was recommended to me. It deals with ice in all its forms, from ice cubes to glaciers to ice sculptures and even ice in outer space ... Read full review

Contents

Lakes
9
Rivers
34
Great Lakes
47
Loading
55
Breakup
73
Alps
85
Surging Glaciers
97
West Antarctic Ice Sheet
109
Human I
319
Human II
330
Games I
344
Games II
359
Uses I
369
Uses II
381
Uses III
391
Other Forms of Ice
407

Coring
119
On Glaciers
136
Icebergs I
146
Icebergs II
164
Sea Ice I
181
Sea Ice II
203
Ground Ice I
224
Ground Ice II
234
Plants
246
Animals I
258
Animals II
273
Animals III
289
Animals IV
307
Atmosphere I
413
Atmosphere II
430
Atmosphere III
438
Space I
450
Space II
461
Ice Ages
474
Lake of the Woods
492
Acknowledgments
503
Notes
505
Select Bibliography
523
Index
537
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Mariana Gosnell is a former medicine reporter for Newsweek.  Her articles have appeared in many magazines, including Smithsonian and National Wildlife.  She is the author of Zero Three Bravo: Solo Across America in a Small Plane.

 

 

 

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