The Wavewatcher's Companion

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Bloomsbury, 2010 - Waves - 336 pages
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Winner of the 2011 Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books. One bright February afternoon, on a beach in Cornwall, Gavin Pretor-Pinney took a break from cloudspotting and started watching the waves rolling into shore. Mesmerised, he wondered where they had come from, and decided to find out. He soon realised that waves don't just appear on the ocean, they are everywhere around us, and our lives depend on them. From the rippling beats of our hearts, to the movement of food through our digestive tracts and of signals across our brains, waves are the transport systems of our bodies. Everything we see and hear reaches us via light and sound waves, and our information age is reliant on the microwaves and infrared waves used by the telephone and internet infrastructure. From shockwaves unleashed by explosions to torsional waves that cause suspension bridges to collapse, from sonar waves that allow submarines to 'see' with sound to Mexican waves that sweep through stadium crowds...there were waves, it seemed, wherever Gavin looked. But what, he wondered, could they all have in common with ones we splash around in on holiday? By the time he made the ultimate surfer's pilgrimage to Hawaii, Gavin had become a world-class wavewatcher, although he was still rubbish at surfing. And, while this fascinating, funny book may not teach you how to ride the waves, it will show you how to tune into the shapes, colours and forms of life's many undulations.

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About the author (2010)

Best-selling author Tom Clancy was an English major at Baltimore's Loyola College and he had a dream of writing a novel. As a Maryland insurance broker with a passion for naval history, his dream came true with his first effort, The Hunt for Red October. He has since written more than a dozen novels, which have a blend of realism and authenticity, intricate plotting, and razor-sharp suspense. Ten of the novels, including The Teeth of the Tiger feature the character Jack Ryan, former stock broker and CIA employee. Mr. Clancy's nonfiction works include a series of guided tours of America's warfighting assets, Submarine, Armored Cav, Fighter Wing, Marine, and Airborne. He lives in Maryland.

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