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“If you have more than a passing interest in the weather, then ‘Treading on Thin Air’ by Dr. Elizabeth Austin will be a great read. Austin has the ability of taking highly complex concepts and putting them into terms that aren’t just understandable, but instead, brings the reader into her world of passion for the weather.”

Eureka Times-Standard

“Curiosity and the joy of adventure” are the drivers behind Elizabeth Austin’s choices as an atmospheric physicist and lover of Nature. Her book is a delightful read for scientists, citizen scientists and anyone curious about Life on Earth. Each chapter has a unique story, visits to fascinating places around the world, meetings with reknown scientists and an occasional smattering of classic poetry! Austin takes her readers on one adventure after another through the eyes of a meteorologists including D-Day, John F. Kennedy Jr.’s plane crash, frightening incidents caused by shifting weather patterns, the GAIA hypothesis and her own fascinating research projects. The discussion on climate change and humanities role in this reality is relevant to everyone! One of my favorite lines: “If humans lived to be 400, we would live very differently.” We would see clearly the unintended consequences of our choices. Bravo!

Rhana Kozak

Outstanding book describing how the author followed her desire to be a scientist and succeeded in a male dominated world, especially in the field of atmospheric science. The descriptions of her forensic cases illustrate how a meteorologist can be real weather detective.

Amazon Customer

Terrific read! Good combination of science, clearly explained, and memoir, of very varied, compelling experiences and work.
It’s enlightening to realize and understand how complex and interconnected weather, environment and human activity is, which this book lays out.


“In this mix of memoir and popular science, Austin takes readers on a global tour and up into the heights of the stratosphere to learn about weather, climate, and how it affects our planet and our lives. This far-ranging book should whet readers’ appetites for learning more about meteorology and its surprisingly broad applications.”

Publishers Weekly

“I found it fascinating, especially the discussing of flight KAL 801 in Guam, where she buried the contentions of the FAA about what was going on weather wise at Agana, when the flight was inbound.”

Jerry Sterns
Sterns & Walker

“I loved this book. As a customs and intelligence officer, the deductive versus inductive reasoning is what I found particularly fascinating.”

Geoff Soper
Customs and Intelligence Officer
Christchurch, New Zealand

“Terrific. Treading on Thin Air explains highly complicated weather patterns and tackles global warming. But what really caught my attention was how Dr. Austin coached women on how to navigate a career in science fields. A fascinating read that captivated my attention.”

Jeff Tieferman

“Treading on Thin Air, chronicles a love affair with science. It is an essential read for those who would be romanced by the mysteries of our planet’s atmosphere. It is populated with characters who don’t “do” science, but by those that must do science, because they have fallen under the spell of the mysteries that surround us.

Elizabeth Austin is one of those people.

“The story of the Perlan Project’s quest to explore the atmosphere up to edge of space in a glider is a recurring part of this remarkable story.”

-Ed Warnock
CEO, The Perlan Project

BRILLIANT! Dr. Austin takes us on a journey around the world and covers so many topics in a fascinating and engaging way! From the implications of today’s weather and its changes, to aviation and how our atmosphere affects it, how meteorology plays into accidents and crime investigations, she covers it all. I am amazed, but not surprised, at her knowledge in so many scientific areas and her ability to cover them in ways that will be fascinating to anyone reading this book. I learned so very much from reading it and I know others will too. Her stories are a “Must Read” and I thoroughly enjoyed this book!

Robert “Hoot” Gibson
Navy Fighter Pilot and Space Shuttle Commander

Elizabeth Austin has written a wonderful book that uses her personal experiences as an expert witness to expose the fascinating world of forensic meteorology.

Keith L. Seitter, Ph.D, CCM
Executive Director, American Meteorological Society

Treading on Thin Air is totally engaging from the beginning. Intertwining of her professional and personal life was done brilliantly and increased the tempo of this outstanding book by Dr. Austin.
The breadth of her knowledge in so many varied areas of science is amazing. She conveyed great scientific and historical knowledge while relating it to environmental issues. These combined interests will inspire many young people to go into the science-related fields.
Reviewing so many famous and familiar cases was intriguing. The fact that Dr. Austin was personally involved in many of those made them even more dramatic and interesting to read about. Including real people, both famous and personal added to the story.
The book was engaging from the beginning. Readers will never look at weather in the same way!
Hopefully there will be many future books…


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