Gifts for Divers – books to suit all tastes – Pt1
Gift-giving became that much more difficult when the Age of Streaming arrived – DVDs and CDs are no longer the objects of desire they once were. Luckily printed books remain an ever-acceptable option as a present for all but the most Kindle-dedicated, so here is a selection of some of DIVER’s favourite recent diving-related titles
FOR WRECK DIVERS
The Lost Intruder: The Search for a Missing Navy Jet, by Peter M Hunt
Genre-busting autobiographical book that follows a technical wreck-diver obsessed with locating an elusive military aircraft off the USA’s north-west coast. Trouble is, Peter Hunt is also battling the rapid onset of Parkinson’s Disease, possibly caused by extreme diving. This uplifting book about a self-imposed race against time should appeal to all wreck-hunters.
CreateSpace Independent Publishing, ISBN: 9781546334972, Softback, 238pp, £15.40
Ships of the Cunard Line / Ships of the P&O Line, by Sam Warwick & Mike Roussel
Companion volumes, the older Cunard book is now out in paperback with updated site info and some new photos. It focuses on 18 major losses, mostly diveable, including Lusitania, Carpathia and Alaunia, and rounds up 66 more. P&O lost 78 ships between 1837 and 1957, with 26 familiar names such as Salsette, Moldavia, Somali and Carnatic ending up in diveable depths, and all covered here.
The History Press, ISBN: 9780750985383, Softback, 168pp, £20 and ISBN: 9781775845348, Hardback, 180pp, £25
Dive Scapa Flow, by Rod Macdonald
There are many books about this world-class wreck-site off Orkney, based on the German High Seas fleet scuttling of 1919, but this one is masterful in meshing history with diving experiences, and its wreck illustrations are a big plus. Now in its sixth incarnation and twice as thick as it was originally, this centenary edition benefits from inclusion of the latest sonar scans.
Whittles Publishing, ISBN: 9781775845348, Softback, 344pp, £30
Deeper into the Darkness, by Rod Macdonald
Another Macdonald book but a new one, Deeper into the Darkness offers histories and dive narratives of major wrecks from Scapa Flow to Truk and Palau, but blended with anecdotes, background detail and local colour that provide more of a personal touch and insight into the author than usual. It forms the third part of a trilogy with Into the Abyss, (itself recently updated) and The Darkness Below.
Whittles Publishing, ISBN: 9780995567383, Softback, 340pp, 17x24cm, £20
We Die Like Brothers: The Sinking of the ss Mendi, by John Gribble & Graham Scott
The transport ship Mendi, which sank off the Isle of Wight in 1917 with hundreds of black labourers from South Africa abandoned to their fate, was back in the news recently when its undeclared bell was returned by a guilty diver. One of the worst wartime sinkings off Britain, the story is one that should be widely known. The diving aspect is well-treated too.
Historic England, ISBN: 9781848023697, Hardback, 190pp, £17.99
The Titanic Expeditions: Diving to the Queen of the Deep 1985-2010, by Eugene Nesmeyanov
Another Titanic franchise product, but a good one for divers who are into manned submersible adventure because it’s not about the history of the 4km-deep shipwreck so much as the history of its underwater exploration, from discovery by Bob Ballard to the last manned visit by Richie Kohler and John Chatterton in 2005. Heavy on words and detail, light on pictures.
The History Press, ISBN: 9780750985482, Hardback, 300pp, £30
Appeared in DIVER December 2018