Book Reviews


“The Weatherman’s Version of The Right Stuff.”

Thomas Fuller
“The Examiner”

This is probably the fastest I’ve read a book in years. It’s well written and very informative. I learned a lot!

Mike Cox
WHCB radio

“I was hooked within five paragraph’s of Mike Smith’s Warnings.”

Richard Blake
“Reader’s Views”

Just a handful of books in the last generation have been able to capture the importance of science and its benefit to mankind in an engaging manner: Isaac’s Storm, Rocket Boys, The Right Stuff, and the Joy of Chemistry. Add to this list, Warnings: The True Story of How Science Tamed the Weather.

“Meteorology, in his telling, has the same bare-knuckle energy we see in politics or sports. These battles, many of which Smith himself fought in, reveal how much of our modern, weather-safe lifestyle is contingent on personalities, and could have gone another way.

While weather forecasters often appear starchy and bland, Smith makes the weather into an urgent concern, and a remarkable victory. This story turns the weather into a quest, and meteorologists into the most unlikely heroes in recent literature.”

Kevin Nenstiel
University of Nebraska

No longer do airliners crash in wind shear. Hurricanes don’t kill thousands. These are triumphs of science that benefit us every day. But these things didn’t just happen. They are the result of determined, dogged scientists beating the odds and their story is fascinating. That is why Warnings has a 5-Star rating at Amazon.

When the Sirens Were Silent

On May 22, 2011, as the graduation at Joplin High School concluded, the city was “blindsided” by a vicious tornado. This is the only tornado since tornado warnings began in the 1950’s that took more than one hundred lives. What went wrong? And, how can we prevent it from happening again?

“An important read.”

Jason Samenow
The Washington Post

When the Sirens Were Silent is the minute-by-minute story of how just about everything that could go wrong did go wrong as the tornado bore into the community. It has completely sold out of the soft cover version but is available as an e-book at the greatly reduced price of $2.99.

“Whew, I just read it. Heart racing!!”

Denise Neil
Joplin tornado survivor

Sirens doesn’t stop with the story of the Joplin tornado. It provides the latest versions of the tornado safety rules for home, school, and office.

“…. Sometimes grandparents give too much, others can give nothing….give the grandchildren something that will spur their interest in the future, make their minds expand and wonder beyond ones own natural ability for the good of what could be for them…then maybe just maybe, tomorrow one of these grandsons or granddaughters might just well have the ideas of the next entrepreneur, that to me, would have seemed incomprehensible. This is something that I believe Mike Smith’s books, ideas and future insight will give to those grandchildren and it is an investment into their future education as well. Thanks Mike.” Connie Henderson, grandmother of Riley, 13 and Patrick, 14 both of Perry Middle School in Perry, Oklahoma.

Connie S. Henderson


David Hendricks
San Antonio Express-News


“If you are interested in gripping and educational story about science, I strongly suggest adding Warnings to your summer reading list. It is a lot of fun.”

Dr. Roger Pielke, Jr.

“I highly recommend this exceptional book!”

Dr. Roger Pielke, Sr.
“Climate Science” blog

“No one knows more about the science and art of weather forecasting than Mike Smith. Warnings is an entertaining and educational look at the life and work of a man dedicated to predicting storms — and saving lives.”

Charles Alexander
Former Science Editor, Time Magazine

“The book is a fascinating account of the evolution of severe weather, especially tornado, forecasting, as seen through the eyes of one of the main participants. I have no doubt that it will inspire new generation of weather scientists, which is in part the aim of the author.”

Ronald D. McPherson
Executive Director Emeritus, American Meteorological Society

“Mike Smith tells a wonderful story about the growth of modern meteorology and its expanding service to our lives. If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be a meteorologist, what leads young people into such a challenging career and what it’s like to try and forecast everything from snow storms to tornadoes and hurricanes, Mike takes you on a fascinating journey inside the world of weather and the mind and heart of the meteorologist. A great read for anyone.”

Bob Ryan
Chief Meteorologist, WRC TV (NBC), Washington, D.C.; Former president, American Meteorological Society

“This book chronicles the remarkable advances that have occurred in meteorology over the past 50 years — not through dry statistics but through very personal stories…The narrative throughout the bok is engaging and compelling, and I found it very hard to put down after reading just the first few pages. This book is not just for hard-core weather enthusiasts or those who work in weather-related fields (though they will love it). Anyone who has ever watched a stormy sky on warm afternoon or felt moved by the images on the news following the Greensburg tornado or Hurricane Katrina (both of which are covered in this book) will get pulled into the narrative of this book.”

Keith Seitter
Executive Director, American Meteorological Society