Since all of earth's residents seem to be getting some shaking lately, even Michiganians, an article listing some informative materials and recommendations seems appropriate. For general information on earthquakes in the United States, visit the US. Geological Survey website at earthquake.usgs.gov. If you want to see what preparations can be made, visit earthquake.usgs.gov/prepare.
Anyone familiar with Missouri or states in that part of the Midwest has probably heard of the New Madrid earthquakes of 1811-1812. But nothing can prepare you for the eyewitness accounts of people who lived through that period. The eyewitness reports given on the USGS site are chilling. For those wanting more detail, When the Mississippi ran backwards: empire, intrigue, murder, and the New Madrid earthquakes by Jay Feldman ties together the lives of four people who were affected by the earthquakes in some manner, including Tecumseh. Another version of the events is The big one: the earthquake that rocked early America and helped create a science by Jake Page.
For a well-done general introduction to all manner of earthly occurences, Furnace of creation cradle of destruction: a journey to the birthplace of earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis by Roy Chester is a good choice. Featuring nice graphs, maps, and highlight boxes that list major events with their casualties, property losses and more, this is an easy read or one to pick up and browse through.
Wave of destruction: the stories of four families and history's deadliest tsunami by Erich Krauss is an intimate look at third world catastrophe, aid efforts, and the aftermath. Krauss is a disaster specialist who went to Thailand to help, worked in the village about which he then wrote. The four families are genuine, their experiences typical of life for many--yet so much of this book's account will seem unbearable to Western readers. Highly recommended for those who want to know what these events are really like for the victims.