There's a Book for That: National Oceans Month
Now and then, when I grow nostalgic about my ocean childhood – the wauling of gulls and the smell of salt, somebody solicitous will bundle me into a car and drive me to the nearest briny horizon. – Sylvia Plath
June is National Oceans Month, proclaimed such in 2016 by President Barack Obama:
“This month, let us continue the work of ensuring the well-being of these grand bodies of water and the communities that depend on them. As we celebrate the immense beauty and power of our oceans, we are reminded of our shared responsibility to protect them — now and for generations to come.”
In the midst of all we are contending with at this time, let us remember how integral the health of our oceans is to our own. To help us all be great stewards of the sea, we invite you to dip into the following titles for readers of all ages:
THE OUTLAW OCEAN: JOURNEYS ACROSS THE LAST UNTAMED FRONTIER by Ian Urbina
A riveting, adrenaline-fueled tour of a vast, lawless and rampantly criminal world that few have ever seen: the high seas. Both a gripping adventure story and a stunning exposé, this unique work of reportage brings fully into view for the first time the disturbing reality of a floating world that connects us all, a place where anyone can do anything because no one is watching.
THE BREATH OF A WHALE: THE SCIENCE AND SPIRIT OF PACIFIC OCEAN GIANTS by Leigh Calvez
Leigh Calvez has spent a dozen years researching, observing, and probing the lives of the giants of the deep. Here she invites the reader onto a small research catamaran maneuvering among 100-foot long blue whales off the coast of California; or to join the task of monitoring patterns of humpback whale movements at the ocean surface. To experience whales is breathtaking. To understand their lives deepens our connection with the natural world.
POEMS OF THE SEA edited by J. D. McClatchy
Throughout history, poets have felt the ancient pull of the sea, exploring the full range of mankind’s nautical fears, dreams, and longings. This marvelous collection includes classics old and new, from Homer and Milton to Plath and Merwin. In the wide variety of lyrics collected here–sonnets and sea chanteys, ballads and hymns and prayers–we feel the encompassing power of our planet’s restless waters as metaphor, mystery, and muse.
OCEAN: THE DEFINITIVE VISUAL GUIDE by DK
This second edition of Ocean, contains the latest scientific research, coverage of major events like Superstorm Sandy and the Fukushima tsunami, and new graphics and images. Ocean includes an atlas of the world’s oceans and seas compiled using satellite data, brand-new 3-D Earth modeling, and remarkable photography of the marine world that explores the interaction between people and the ocean environment.
PLASTIC OCEAN: HOW A SEA CAPTAIN’S CHANCE DISCOVERY LAUNCHED A DETERMINED QUEST TO SAVE THE OCEANS by Charles Moore
The researcher who discovered the Great Pacific Garbage Patch—and remains one of today’s key advocates for plastic pollution awareness—inspires a fundamental rethinking of the modern Plastic Age. In Plastic Ocean, Moore recounts his ominous findings and unveils the secret life of plastics. From milk jugs and abandoned fishing gear to polymer molecules small enough to penetrate human skin and be unknowingly inhaled, plastic is now suspected of contributing to a host of ailments, including infertility, autism, thyroid dysfunction, and certain cancers. An urgent call to action, Plastic Ocean’s sobering revelations have been embraced by activists, concerned parents, and anyone alarmed by the deadly impact and implications of this man-made environmental catastrophe.
THE OCEAN OF LIFE: THE FATE OF MAN AND THE SEA by Callum Roberts
Economist Book of the Year –Audubon Book of the Year –American Library Association Award winner – Royal Society Winton prize Finalist – Winner of the Rachel Carson award
The sea feeds and sustains us, but everywhere we look marine life is under threat, from Caribbean reefs to arctic fisheries to the deepest regions of the sea. In this passionate paean to the sea and its creatures one of the world’s foremost marine conservation biologists tells the story of man and the sea, from the earliest traces of life on earth to the oceans as we know them today.
FOR YOUNGER READERS
THE OCEAN CALLS: A HAENYEO MERMAID STORY by Tina Cho, Jess X. Snow
A breathtaking picture book featuring a Korean girl and her haenyeo (free diving) grandmother about intergenerational bonds, finding courage in the face of fear, and connecting with our natural world.
OCEAN EMPORIUM: A COMPILATION OF CREATURES by Susie Brooks; Illustrated by Dawn Cooper
Beneath the ocean waves lies a web of life that ties together creatures great and small. Fan favorites like hermit crabs and great white sharks share space with mysterious bottom-dwellers like mimic octopuses and giant sea spiders in this gorgeous exploration of the sea.
ONE DAY ON OUR BLUE PLANET: IN THE OCEAN by Ella Bailey
Young readers will fall in love with this adventurous dolphin calf as she teaches them about the Pacific ocean and all the wonderful creatures beneath the sea.
OCEAN SPEAKS: HOW MARIE THARP REVEALED THE OCEAN’S BIGGEST SECRET by Jess Keating, Katie Hickey
Meet Marie Tharp (1920-2006), the first person to map the Earth’s underwater mountain ridge, in this inspiring picture book biography from the author of Shark Lady. The mid-ocean ridge that Marie discovered is the single largest geographic feature on the planet, and she mapped it all from her small, cramped office.
EXTREME OCEAN: AMAZING ANIMALS, HIGH-TECH GEAR, RECORD-BREAKING DEPTHS, AND MORE by Sylvia Earle, Glen Phalen
Discover the most outrageous aspects of the deep blue—-from record-breaking depths to towering tsunamis, underwater giants to tiny sea creatures—along with ocean conservation challenges and what you can do to help. Extreme Ocean reveals the mystery, majesty, danger, and—above all—the importance of our ocean.
THE NEW OCEAN: THE FATE OF LIFE IN A CHANGING SEA by Bryn Barnard
A fascinating look at the future of our oceans—and how human actions may change them. This book tells the stories of the probable fates of six sea dwellers: jellyfish, orcas, sea turtles, tuna, corals, and blue-green algae. What becomes of them may help you understand what becomes of us.
For more on these titles visit Oceans
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