The Shipwreck Hunter: A Lifetime of Extraordinary Discoveries on the Ocean Floor (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

David L. Mearns, a world-renowned marine geologist, is used to receiving the question, “How do I get a job like yours?” Understandable. After all, whose childhood dreams didn’t include exploring deep-sea shipwrecks and solving mysteries? In The Shipwreck Hunter, Mearns proves that’s actually a thing people grow up to do. Chronicling his decades of experience as a guy who gets to do awesome stuff for a living, Mearns describes tales of crime and passion, fascinating individuals, and discoveries in the ocean. It was quite a treat to peek into such an exciting life. This book will have you Googling: “How do I become a shipwreck hunter?” -Sage

— From Summer Booknotes 2018


This gripping memoir by the world’s foremost marine geologist is an enthralling blend of maritime history, popular science, and Clive Cussler–style adventure.

David L. Mearns has discovered some of the world’s most fascinating and elusive shipwrecks. From the mighty battleship HMS Hood (sunk in a pyrrhic duel with the Bismarck) to solving the mystery of HMAS Sydney, to the crumbling wooden skeletons of Vasco da Gama’s sixteenth century fleet, Mearns has searched for and found dozens of sunken vessels in every ocean of the world.

The Shipwreck Hunter chronicles his most intriguing finds. It describes the extraordinary techniques used, the detailed research and mid-ocean stamina (and courage) required to find a wreck thousands of feet beneath the sea, as well as the moving human stories that lie behind each of these oceanic tragedies. Combining the adventuring derring-do of Indiana Jones with the precision of a scientist, The Shipwreck Hunter opens an illuminating porthole into the shadowy depths of the ocean.

About the Author

David L. Mearns, a Britain-based scientist and deep-sea shipwreck hunter, has found some of the world’s most notorious shipwrecks, many of which had once been deemed unable to be found. Over his twenty-five-year career, he has led the research and discovery of twenty-two major shipwrecks, and his company Blue Water Recoveries has been awarded three Guinness World Records, including one for the deepest shipwreck ever found. He has been the subject of Discovery Channel documentaries and was recently featured in National Geographic’s “Best Job Ever” series. He is a fellow of the Explorers Club and the Royal Geographical Society. This is his first book to be published in America.

Praise For…

"Famed shipwreck hunter Mearns provides an engrossing collection of his most exciting undersea finds. Highly entertaining. Required reading for any maritime enthusiast."
— Kirkus Reviews

"Mearns’s thoughtful and detailed account chronologically traces each shipwreck, sharing vivid stories of every vessel from design to demise. The rich historical details and singular characters offer at least one chapter for everyone: from the murderous plot aboard MV Lucona to the World War II battles of HMAS Sydney. Equal parts a suspenseful story, a lesson in hard work, and a compelling argument for the modern importance of discovering and documenting shipwrecks."
— Science

"Mearns's unique perspective on the art and science of locating shipwrecks makes for fascinating reading."
— Publishers Weekly

"A fascinating view into the process of conducting a marine quest. Whether viewed as occupational inspiration or as a true-life deep-sea Clive Cussler entertainment, Mearns’ chronicle will inform and interest many a reader."
— Booklist

"For Mearns, setting world records and recovering centuries-old treasures is just another day at the office—or ocean, rather."
— National Geographic

"Engaging. Intertwines the technical aspects of his work with the human narrative surrounding these wrecks in a compelling manner. His excitement about what we’re yet to discover in the oceans is infective. Mearns is an able storyteller whose life’s work makes for an absorbing read."
— Library Journal

"The underwater worlds of past and present collide in the depths of the ocean in this gripping and suspenseful narrative by David Mearns, a true expert on mysteries of the deep sea."
— Clive Cussler

"In 1916 Ernest Shackleton’s ship Endurance sank into the icy depths of the Weddell Sea. David Mearns has long wanted to pay tribute to Shackleton by finding his ship. Given David’s amazing track record and outstanding abilities, I am quite sure that one day I will be able to see images of my grandfather’s Endurance, no longer lost."
— Alexandra Shackleton
Product Details
ISBN: 9781681777603
ISBN-10: 1681777606
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publication Date: June 5th, 2018
Pages: 416
Language: English