Kaleidoscope Sky

By Jocelyn Rice|Friday, March 07, 2008
RELATED TAGS: EARTH SCIENCE

by Tim Herd (Abrams, $19.95)

Flattening into a stack of glowing pancakes is just one of the tricks the setting sun can play on your eyes. These series of photographs, in which sunsets morph from left to right over a few minutes, capture the atmosphere’s powerful distortion effects. The apparent reflection of sun on water, for instance, is not a reflection at all, but a mirage created by the moist, stable air above the water’s surface. Meteorologist Tim Herd provides an accessible rundown of the science behind the many types of natural light shows—some unfamiliar, all lovely—shown in Kaleidoscope Sky.

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