Pacific: The Ocean of the Future
- Narrated by: Simon Winchester
- Length: 14 hrs and 2 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 22-10-15
- Language: English
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Limited
The Pacific is a world of tsunamis and Magellan, of the Bounty mutiny and the Boeing Company. It is the stuff of the towering Captain Cook and his wide-ranging network of exploring voyages, Robert Louis Stevenson and Admiral Halsey. It is the place of Paul Gauguin and the explosion of the largest-ever American atomic bomb, on Bikini Atoll, in 1951.
It has an astonishing recent past, an uncertain present and a hugely important future. The ocean and its peoples are the new lifeblood, fizz and thrill of America - which draws so many of its minds and so much of its manners from the sea - while the inexorable rise of the ancient center of the world, China, is a fixating fascination. The presence of rogue states - North Korea most notoriously today - suggest that the focus of the responsible world is shifting away from the conventional postwar obsessions with Europe and the Middle East and towards a new set of urgencies.
Navigating the newly evolving patterns of commerce and trade, the world's most violent weather and the fascinating histories, problems and potentials of the many Pacific states, Simon Winchester's thrilling journey is a grand depiction of the future ocean.
"Simon Winchester is a literary impresario.... This is a clever, engaging and original look at what would seem well-trodden historical paths; but Winchester, delightfully, breaks a fresh trail." ( Economist)
"Winchester unfolds this epic narrative with admirable simplicity: his prose style is conversational, and crackles with strange images. He marries even-handed scholarship with a gift for storytelling, neither dumbing down nor assuming any specific knowledge in his readership. This is from start to finish an enthralling book, and one that does justice to the magnitude of its subject." (Edmund Gordon, Sunday Times)
"Illuminating...a wonderful, encyclopaedic book, pinpointing key moments in the narrative of an entire ocean and our relationship to it." (Philip Hoare, Sunday Telegraph)
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Anthony on 12-12-16
The Pacific - Tumultuous Ocean
Simon Winchester sketches a series of historic, cultural, diplomatic and economic scenarios, all centred on the Pacific, each adding depth to the powerful forces operating...
Opening with the Bikini Atoll and nuclear weapons testing and the associated cultural annihilation of the original Bikini inhabitants, Winchester presents a seascape of issues and challenges, culminating with the rise of China as an economic and military force, the disputes over the South China Sea, and the difficulties for the West of relinquishing power and influence.
Building on data supplemented by insights and anecdotes, Winchester explores environmental changes including El Nino, global temperature, sea level rises and implications for people and the coral reef; the force and fury of hurricanes, typhoons and tsunamis in Darwin, the Philippines and Banda Aceh; the origins of surfing and its commercialisation; the enlarging swirling Pacific garbage dump; Australia and its knife-edge racism-multiculturalism that welcomes migrants but abuses asylum seekers; the ascent of South Korea and the transfer of Hong Kong to China... and lots more.
Informative, entertaining, and surprisingly compelling...
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Anonymous User on 10-05-17
interesting anecdotes with a general theme
the book is an interesting collection of stories of things that happened in and around the Pacific. however, the author is trying a bit too hard. the message he tries to convey with the "ocean of the future" never becomes convincing. he has virtually no arguments to back up his claims the the Pacific will become what the Mediterranean was in ancient times. and it becomes tiring when during every story he tries to push his "pacific" message...
1 of 1 people found this review helpful