The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985

Book Reviews

Texas Weather. By George W. Bomar. (Austin: University of Texas
Press, 1983. Pp. ix+265. Preface, acknowledgments, figures, maps,
illustrations, tables, glossary, bibliography, index. $22.95, cloth;
$9.95, paper.)
Everyone talks about the weather, as we all know, but few can really
talk about it intelligently and even fewer can write about it authorita-
tively. George Bomar not only can do both of the above, but has.
Texas Weather might serve equally well as a textbook in meteorology
or as an enjoyable volume to settle down with on some cold, rainy
night, whatever one's interests. The book includes historical data on
storms and floods; trivia regarding the hottest temperatures, the worst
hailstorm, etc.; and explanations of words for the crossword puzzle.
This book reflects years of interest in, and careful observation of, the
weather, which has had such a significant impact upon all aspects of
Texas's physical and cultural landscapes, including man's past and
present activities.
The 113 photographs, maps, and charts, all well done, are easily
comprehended and were carefully selected to supplement the text.
The text incorporates a number of personal experiences which add
interest. Chapter one, for example, discusses the processes of collecting,
analyzing, and disseminating meteorological data, including an ac-
count of the cooperative weather observer that most readers will find
revealing. An extensive appendix gives a lot of detail and keeps the
text from getting bogged down in numbers. Also, there is an excellent
glossary that clearly defines those terms not used in everyday discussion
of the weather.
The lack of footnotes is one of the few points about the book that
might be criticized. The author relied for the most part on primary
sources, especially the various National Weather Service publications
and contemporary newspaper accounts. These are referred to in the
text, so the absence of footnotes is not a serious problem. Twenty stan-
dard works, suggested for additional reading, are listed in the bibliog-
raphy. The author does not describe the evaporation pan, although he
discusses lake evaporation at some length; this does not seriously de-
tract from the book, however.
Texas Weather is certainly one of the finest, if not the finest, most
comprehensive and readable works regarding a state's weather that
has been published. It is certainly required reading for anyone con-
cerned with the atmospheric sciences or with Texas. Historians, econo-
mists, geographers, and other social scientists will also find this book to

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101210/. Accessed September 15, 2014.