PACIFIC: The Ocean of the FutureSIMON WINCHESTER Book Number: 81802 Product format: Hardback
The Pacific is an oceanic behemoth of eye-watering complexity. The dimensions are staggering, its 64 million square miles representing a third of our planet's surface and containing 45% of its water. There are 10,600 miles of uninterrupted sea between Panama and Malaysia and at a depth of seven miles here are the deepest trenches as well as the world's tallest mountains. It is the most seismically active and biologically diverse and oldest of all seas, its chemistry and meteorology affecting the entire globe and it is also the most difficult to get into - unless you are bold enough to tackle the Bering Strait in the Arctic or the maelstrom of the Southern Ocean, there is no entrance wider than 300 miles and apart from the Strait of Magellan in Tierra del Fuego there is no natural entrance on the American side except for the man-made shortcut of the Panama Canal. Winchester looks at ten key moments in its modern history and that of those nations that border it. Beginning with the thermonuclear tests on Bikini atoll in the 1950s, the rise of the Japanese electronics industry and the advent of surf culture in California we move onto the North Koreans capturing the spy-ship USS Pueblo, the sinking of the liner Queen Elizabeth off Hong Kong, Australia and the destruction wrought upon it by Supercyclone Tracy, deepwater submersible Alvin discovers heat and life in the abyss, the first signs of the destruction of coral reefs are seen and the unstoppable economic rise of China. 506pp with b/w illus.
Published price: £25
Bibliophile price: £16.00