I had just intended to dip in to Susan Casey’s The Wave, but I was soon swept up, and I rode it out to the end.


Susan Casey (author of The Devil’s Teeth) investigates the increasingly brutal and baffling “rogue waves,” giants that come out of nowhere and sink ships and pummel oil rigs. She speaks to mariners, climatologists and insurers to try to understand what is causing these waves, and how they impact our planet. Along with the experts, she also speaks to the people who perhaps understand these waves the most: big wave surfers like Laird Hamilton who thrive on the white-knuckle rides these monsters deliver.


This is a fascinating book from an environmental standpoint, but I enjoyed the perspectives of the surfers even more (and this is a big part of the book). What motivates them to take such risks? How does it feel to ride a 100 foot wave? How do you get back on the board after you nearly losing your life? The Wave provides answers to these questions, and reading the book is as exhilarating as it is enlightening.


Want to know more? Watch this: