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Download Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883 Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883 Audiobook, by Simon Winchester Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (7,394 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Simon Winchester Narrator: Simon Winchester Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2004 ISBN: 9780060744045
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Simon Winchester, New York Times bestselling author of The Professor and the Madman, examines the legendary annihilation in 1883 of the volcano-island of Krakatoa, which was followed by an immense tsunami that killed nearly forty thousand people. The effects of the immense waves were felt as far away as France. Barometers in Bogotá and Washington, D.C., went haywire. Bodies were washed up in Zanzibar. The sound of the island's destruction was heard in Australia and India and on islands thousands of miles away. Most significant of all -- in view of today's new political climate -- the eruption helped to trigger in Java a wave of murderous anti-Western militancy among fundamentalist Muslims, one of the first outbreaks of Islamic-inspired killings anywhere. Krakatoa gives us an entirely new perspective on this fascinating and iconic event.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Brilliant...One of the best books ever written about the history and significance of a natural disaster.” 

    New York Times

  • “A real-life story bigger than any Hollywood blockbuster.” 

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Masterful build-up of literary and geological tension.” 

    Economist (London)

  • “Krakatoa is a pleasure from beginning to end.” 

    Boston Sunday Globe

  • “Winchester dramatically delivers...the book is absorbing.” 

    Daily News

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A 2003 Time Magazine Top 10 Book for Nonfiction
  • Audio Publisher’s Association “Audie” Award

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robert Schwab | 2/17/2014

    " Winchester is an enthusiastic earth scientist who is also an excellent writer. I learned a lot about geology, history, and geography reading this book, and enjoyed the story immensely. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Denise | 2/4/2014

    " Very detailed, maybe too detailed. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Taarna | 1/19/2014

    " Informative yet an easy read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gail | 1/17/2014

    " Another of Winchester's astonishing books about geology. His ability to draw in biology, evolution, botany, anthropology, and odd-lot obscure characters make this a book that will entertain you while in adds greatly to your knowledge of natural history. Highly recommended. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Coinboy | 1/15/2014

    " This is about a lot more than a big volcanic explosion. It's mostly about how people's understanding about that explosion has changed over time, right up to the mid-1960s, when the evidence for plate tectonics (largely through cold-war technological advances) solidified that theory. I appreciated the simple explanations for subduction faults, and the whole book is written in a quirky personal style that avoids dryness. Entertaining and informative. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 GeekChick | 1/12/2014

    " I loved Winchester's book on the first geologic map, so I eagerly bought this one. I didn't find it as interesting though. As a geolgist, I thought I'd be devouring every page. But for some reason, I just found myself impatient to get to the point. I recall a lot of detail about the Dutch colonial life -- which was interesting but perhaps went on too long. After the first couple of mini-eruptions, I put the book down. I hope to finish it someday. Maybe it was just bad timing for me. I would still recommend it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 brian tanabe | 1/10/2014

    " Winchester always walks a fine line between a great story and too much backstory. He crossed that line here. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nora | 1/8/2014

    " Very well researched and well written. Probably more information about Krakatoa than I needed but an all around good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Toby | 1/8/2014

    " Good broad overview over Indonesia history. A little to much geology and ecology for me "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Clare | 1/1/2014

    " Interesting look at the day this volcano erupted violently. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rob Godfrey | 12/22/2013

    " Great read, full of facts and anecdotes to keep your attention right the way through. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joshua | 10/30/2013

    " was completely ignorant of the subject matter and the extent of this volcano, or any volcano's, ability to affect earth. slows down in places but worth-while if interested in geology/indonesia/volcanic activity "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carolyn | 5/28/2013

    " A real slog through the scientific details, but I was interested in the history of the area and the eruption so I persevered. I'm always looking to better understand the world around me. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Byron Miller | 4/17/2013

    " A slow read, but the information conveyed in this book is fantastic. If you bog down reading it, try the audio version. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gerri | 4/11/2013

    " This is an excellent factual book about geology in general and the nature of volcanoes. Simon Winchester is the same author that wrote "The Professor and the Madman" about the writing of the dictionary. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Carmen | 2/19/2013

    " A really good read. Great non-fiction writing. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Scott | 9/22/2012

    " Didn't enjoy this one as much as some of his others. Dense at times. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sandyboy | 6/17/2012

    " romping stuff great factual read "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Matt | 5/17/2012

    " Very interesting read for the latent geologist in me. Krakatoa (the book) is a little bit of history of the area around the island of Sumatra and a big part of that is its active geologic history. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jamie | 3/19/2012

    " the first 150 pages were an abomination. the interesting bits were just that but it was entirely too long. i don't think mr. winchester is a very good writer, i won't be reading another. i did enjoy reading about plate tectonics, i wasn't aware it is such a young scientific field. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Anna | 5/19/2011

    " Who knew that a book about the creation of a dictionary could be so fascinating? I could not put this book down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jason | 5/16/2011

    " A bittersweets story of how a paranoid schizophrenic, convicted of murder and condemned to an insane asylum, finds solace by taking part in the greatest English literary achievement to date. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Libby | 5/13/2011

    " What a great book! I had forgotten all about it I read it so long ago. Must go find and reread! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Deepti | 5/12/2011

    " Nice weaving of history, facts, and fiction all in one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 5/8/2011

    " A truly weird tale about the making of the Oxford Dictionary. I enjoyed it immensely. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marissa | 5/8/2011

    " "He was mad, and for that, we have reason to be glad." Unless you're the wife or one of the 7 children of the man he killed that is. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Melissa | 5/7/2011

    " The book was an interesting story, but I found it quite boring. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jennifer | 5/6/2011

    " The parts that were really amazing had to compete with the parts that were simply pretentious. Pity. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Miriam | 5/3/2011

    " Couldn't get through it. So boring. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Diah | 4/28/2011

    " I'm a lingo junkie so I really liked this book. Lotsof interesting detail, simply superb :) "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Leah | 4/28/2011

    " The book was exceedingly hard to get into and and abnormally slow. It was not as informative as one might think. I would no recommended this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tim | 4/24/2011

    " Read this book a second time after reading it the first time in 2004. A good book that gives you a deep appreciation of the work and effort that went into the making of the OED. "

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About the Author
Author Simon Winchester

Simon Winchester is the acclaimed author of many books, including The Professor and the Madman, The Man Who Loved China, A Crack in the Edge of the World, and Krakatoa—all of which were New York Times bestsellers and appeared on numerous best and notable lists. In 2006 Winchester was made an officer of the Order of the British Empire by her Majesty the Queen. He lives in Manhattan and in western Massachusetts.