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Publisher's Summary

Following his acclaimed Atlantic and The Men Who United the States, New York Times best-selling author Simon Winchester offers an enthralling biography of the Pacific Ocean and its role in the modern world, exploring our relationship with this imposing force of nature.
As the Mediterranean shaped the classical world and the Atlantic connected Europe to the New World, the Pacific Ocean defines our tomorrow. With China on the rise, so, too, are the American cities of the West Coast, including Seattle, San Francisco, and the long cluster of towns down the Silicon Valley.
Today the Pacific is ascendant. Its geological history has long transformed us - tremendous earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis - but its human history, from a Western perspective, is quite young, beginning with Magellan's 16th-century circumnavigation. It is a natural wonder whose most fascinating history is currently being made.
In telling the story of the Pacific, Simon Winchester takes us from the Bering Strait to Cape Horn, from the Yangtze River to the Panama Canal, and to the many small islands and archipelagos that lie in between. He observes the fall of a dictator in Manila, visits aboriginals in Northern Queensland, and is jailed in Tierra del Fuego, the land at the end of the world. His journey encompasses a trip down the Alaska Highway, a stop at the isolated Pitcairn Islands, a trek across South Korea, and a glimpse of its mysterious northern neighbor.
Winchester's personal experience is vast and his storytelling second to none. And his historical understanding of the region is formidable, making Pacific a paean to this magnificent sea of beauty, myth, and imagination that is transforming our lives.
©2015 Simon Winchester (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Mark on 01-01-16

Ponderous hard to keep attention

Would you try another book from Simon Winchester and/or Simon Winchester?

I have liked many of Simon Winchester books, Atlantic, The Crack in the Edge of the Earth, Krakatoa. This is not as good.

Would you ever listen to anything by Simon Winchester again?

Yes

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

A bunch of disjointed stories that droned on and on....

What character would you cut from Pacific?

Kill the part about Sony and Surfing, and that boat that's trying to sail around the world.

Any additional comments?

Hope Simon's next book is more up to the pervious books' standards

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful


By William L. Cantor, MD on 12-17-15

Winchester books are a must read/listen

What did you love best about Pacific?

Incredible amount of important information made enjoyably digestible and read as only the author can. Serious but with wit.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Pacific?

The epilog describes the navigating skills of a Polynesian man who enables a team from Hawaii to go to Tahiti without any instruments, simply by "reading" the ocean. History, geology, politics --everyone from Sandra Dee to Douglas McArthur.

Which scene was your favorite?

I couldn't chose, I liked them all.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

NO! The true pleasure of a Simon Winchester book is to listen to 15-30 minutes and then talk about what you have learned

Any additional comments?

I have listened to all of his books and I am constantly astonished by his knowledge and ability to interweave tectonic plates and weather and history and religion into a coherent and memorable narrative. I look forward to his next book.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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