Praise for The Restless Sea Series:
BOOK REVIEW- by Carol Standish:
"It is the extraordinary book that becomes more urgently relevant over
time. Award-winning children’s author, Carole G. Vogel has written six
such books. Each one deals with a discreet and specific aspect of one of
the most significant elements of our ocean planet: the ocean.
Published in 2003 for middle-schoolers, the series was promptly
neglected by the publisher because of an unfortunate marketing decision.
But the publisher did us all a disservice. These books are so well
written, designed and illustrated (with spectacular full-page color
photographs) that they deserve the attention of every reader—regardless
of the age - who is curious about the intricate transactions between the
oceans of air and oceans of water which form the life support systems of
Each of the six books in the series presents a stand alone discussion of
a particular aspect of ocean science from geologic formation to sources
of salinity, the influence of the sun and moon to survival techniques of
its amazing and exotic denizens, both plant and animal.
Ocean Wildlife (88pp) as the title states focuses on the fauna and food
chains that only exist in the salt water environment. Survival
techniques, exotic sensory mechanisms, location devices, tides and tidal
zones are some of the subjects that Vogel explains with an easy clarity
and a minimum of technical vocabulary. The accompanying photographs
which alternate with pages of text are dazzling.
Underwater Exploration (72pp) examines mankind’s efforts to understand
and exploit the seas and the ocean basin. Discoveries of many a treasure
ship are part of the bargain. Tracing the progress of ocean exploration
from the building and deployment of the first bathyscaphe, Trieste in
1953 to modern sonar mapping, Vogel touches on such fascinating subjects
as continental drift, the chemicals of life and underwater volcanoes and
deep sea vents that can now be observed, measured and analyzed by
un-manned deep sea submersibles bristling with sensors.
Dangerous Crossings (72pp) is a rollicking good read about all sorts of
disasters which happen to involve the ocean. Killer hurricanes, tidal
waves and typhoons which cause ship sinkings and survival stories are
only bested by the exploits of pirates then and now. (Perhaps the most
remarkable story in this volume is that of the Vietnamese boat
people—almost half the Vietnamese boats that made it to sanctuary had
been attacked by pirates.)
Savage Waters (73pp) presents an outstanding explanation of the “rhythms
of the sea,” that is, tides, currents, wave construction, sea level,
drifts, streams and gyres, the sea floor and heavenly bodies which
influence them...and the climates they help to create. Beside the usual
surfeit of knock-out photographs, the text of his book is augmented with
beautifully rendered illustrations of the various phenomena under
discussion. I never quite understood how waves formed and moved until I
read this explanation and absorbed the accompanying illustrations.
In Shifting Shores (70pp) Vogel discusses the various ways in which the
contours of continents change. The shifting of tectonic plates,
volcanoes and seamounts, tsunamis meteorites, sinking shores and rising
oceans are constantly reshaping the land masses. Human activity also
influences the health and condition of the dry ground which we inhabit.
The author neatly exemplifies the consequences of these natural
processes and human decisions using examples of two cities - ancient
Heraklieon, lying 26 feet under water in the Mediterranean Sea, about 4
miles off the north coast of Egypt, and modern New Orleans, Louisiana
today 6 ½ feet below sea level-and sinking.
Scientists theorize that Herakleion was drowned during the eighth
century A.D. either by an earthquake or by the flooding of the Nile
River which turned the marshy delta land on which the city stood into
ooze which simply sank under the excess weight of water.
Vogel draws a parallel between Heraklieon and New Orleans which is built
on the Mississippi River's marshy delta ooze, so clearly vulnerable not
so much to earthquakes as floods produced by violent weather. Herakleion
thrived for more than a thousand years before succumbing to the sea.
Does New Orleans even have half a chance for such longevity?
Each volume in The Restless Sea series stands on its own merit but Human
Impact (87pp) is also a coda to the rest of the books in the series.
Vogel says it may be the most important book she has ever written. With
emphasis on the connectivity of all the ecosystems that exist on the
planet, she cites the havoc and disruption that human activity has had
on the survivability of the very systems we depend on for our own
existence. Overpopulation, overdevelopment of the coastal fringe, over
fishing, over fertilizing. Combined with the practice of dumping and
draining, ignoring toxic run-off our cavalier (at best) behavior has
caused “dead zones” which are growing in size and number. Just think
Both instructive and thoroughly enjoyable, these books are written in
clear, economical prose that is easily digestible to both youngsters and
adults. They should not only be in every school and public library, but
on your own bookshelf (or coffee table, they are that handsome).
Dangerous Crossings, Savage Waters, Underwater Exploration and Ocean
Wildlife are in stock at Amazon. Human Impact and Shifting Shores seem
to be available in paperback only from the secondary marketplace...or
harass your nearest book dealer. There are hardcover editions available
for each title. Urge your local library to buy the series." – Published
by Maine Harbors.com,
"Dramatic titles and eye-catching covers will draw readers into these
attractive, well-written volumes in The Restless Sea series,
which successfully blend history and science… Scientific subjects are
discussed clearly and concisely, and the texts are as engaging as they
are informative… The appealing layouts make excellent use of color
graphics and photographs." –Booklist
"For years, Carole Vogel has been writing consistently
excellent children’s books on science, nature, and natural disasters.
The Restless Sea is actually a six-book collection for middle- and
high-school students on topics ranging from ocean wildlife, to undersea
exploration, to environmental problems affecting the oceans. The volumes
are generously illustrated with color photographs and the prose, as
always is clear, strong, and eminently readable." – Kenyon College
“Parents and teachers alike should
not be without this handsome set of books. There are perfect for helping
us and our children realize the importance of nature's greatest
ecosystem, the ocean.”
–Diana Bennett, reviewer for Midwest Book Review