Written by Douglas Brinkley
HarperCollins Publishers 2006
|No horror film, music
or literature could come close to creating the real terror that the Gulf Coast states of
Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana experienced last summer. The devastation that Hurricane
Katrina caused is written with sensitivity toward those who were involved but Douglas
Brinkley does not back away from exposing the many scary facts of the storm, flooding and
political mishaps in this 700-page book.
Fiction will never be more interesting than reality and THE GREAT DELUGE proves this. Douglas Brinkley is a professor and director of the Roosevelt Center at Tulane University in New Orleans. With his background, knowledge and vantage point, Brinkley is the perfect person to tell the many frightening stories of what the hurricane did and how it made people react.
Some of the most frightening moments in the book were (and there are many); when looters rampaged through the city brandishing weapons; a father protecting his family was innocently shot down by the police in front of the Convention Center; the numerous situations where people tried to flee to the attics of their homes, only to get trapped and put into a situation where there seemed to be no escape from drowning. Ill never forget when hurricane jock Tony Zumbado & his colleague found a small church full of dead bodies. I was really unnerved to read that there were people actually trying to shoot down helicopter personnel while they attempted to rescue people on the ground & homes and other buildings. That is a really scary situation, something hard for me to even imagine happening.
As the weather pounded the southern gulf coast states, its really sad to read how nonchalant the government was, especially within our capital. From the president on down, our national leaders did little to provide help to those places and people that needed it. Another major problem was the careless oil companies who paid little attention towards the preservation of the natural sandbars located below New Orleans and how that disregard had a very real effect on what ended up happening in The Big Easy.
Add that the canals in and around New Orleans were not up kept; most of them seriously in need up maintenance, resulted in Lake Pontchartrain and the other waterways draining into the city.
An eye opening, heart-tugging book that will make you appreciate what the people from the Gulf States had to overcome and face to this day. It will be a long time before that part of the county recovers from Katrinas fatal blows. You wont and shouldnt forget reading THE GREAT DELUGE.