Bob Cook's Reviews > Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America

Rising Tide by John M. Barry
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Jun 30, 12

Read from June 25 to 30, 2012



I read Rising Tide after being educated and entertained by Barry's more recent Roger Williams. That was a mistake. In Rising Tide we are given a detailed...a very detailed...story of a truly enormous and tragic history of an American natural disaster that I had never before known about. The enormity of the flood, however was trumped by the flood of anecdotes and details. A more careful job of editing would have improved my appreciation of Barry's research and scholarship.

That said, Rising Tide opened my eyes to a sad chapter in the larger story of the Mississippi Delta, and I recommend it to anyone interested in American social history.

One of the big players in this chapter was Herbert Hoover, and my mind is now piqued to learn more about him. Hoover was so eclipsed by FDR, at least in my mind, and he is a far more complex man than I ever imagined. Barry gives us an introduction to this complexity, an unexpected bonus in reading Rising Tide.

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