Heat: Adventures in the World’s Fiery Places

Bill Streever, Author
Bill Streever. Little, Brown, $26.99 (368p) ISBN 978-0-316-10533-0
Reviewed on: 12/17/2012
Release date: 01/15/2013
Paperback - 349 pages - 978-0-316-10532-3
Open Ebook - 978-0-316-21528-2
Open Ebook - 212 pages - 978-0-316-21529-9
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Streever’s follow-up to his 2010 New York Times bestseller, Heat, follows a structure as he explores any place hot or anything that creates heat, like Death Valley, forest fires, coal, oil, nuclear bombs, cooking, and volcanoes. There is stream of consciousness in Streever’s style: a chapter that starts with a walk in the desert can contain tangents about 18th-century scientist Lavoisier, heat stroke, nuclear test sites, fevers, firewalking, hyponatremia, and the sinking of the USS Indianapolis. But it’s delivered in funny, matter-of-fact prose, as when describing his ineptitude at starting a fire (“If the world were populated by people like me, we would still be living in trees and eating fruit. Climate change would not be an issue”). In this worthy companion to Cold, Streever is able to mix the pop science, personal experiences, and historic asides into a fun and informative commentary on a subject that few people think about despite its inherent life and death implications. 12 b&w illus. (Jan.)
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