Photograph of Sri Lankan memoirist and economist Sonali Deraniyagala.

Sonali Deraniyagala

An undersea megathrust earthquake with a magnitude of 9.1 struck near Indonesia on December 26, 2004, at 7:59 a.m.; over the next seven hours a series of waves, some of which made landfall at a height of thirty feet, inundated the coasts of several countries on the Indian Ocean, killing Sonali Deraniyagala’s husband, children, and parents, as well as around 230,000 other men, women, and children. It was the deadliest tsunami in recorded history. An economist at the University of London, Deraniyagala published her memoir Wave in 2013.

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