Jonathan White, Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean (San Antonio Texas: Trinity University Press) 2017.
Jonathan White has come up with a strikingly engaging book for those of us who have an interest in the ocean, but no real desire for in depth scientific analysis. He has not slighted scientific method, but rather taken his extensive knowledge and packaged it in a book that is engaging and delightful to read. Combining a bit of sea lore with the analysis of th amazingly complex patterns of water movement on the face of the earth, the book reminds readers of how incredibly difficult it is to fully understand the rise and fall of the oceans. I might have skipped over this volume save for its excellent reviews in several boat building magazines to which I subscribe. I'm certainly glad that I took the time to read it.
Like other topics that engage me, the movement of tides is incredibly complex. the motion of the earth, the gravitational pull of the Moon, Sun and other objects, the currents of rivers flowing into the sea, the shape of coasts and dozens of other factors influence the rise and fall of tides and the ocean currents that result from this movement.
Sprinkled in with the analysis are true stories of incredibly high tidal bores, first hand observations of areas of incredible tides, information on the threat posed by rising ocean levels and more. Yet White does not minimize the sheer mystery of the tides. The book is remarkably engaging and will continue to be a good reference for this mid-continent dweller who occasionally visits coasts.