Oceanic Wilderness

Roger Steene, Author, Gerry Allan, Author, Roger C. Steene, Author
Roger Steene, Author, Gerry Allan, Author, Roger C. Steene, Author . Firefly $59.95 (340p) ISBN 978-1-5529-7999-0
Reviewed on: 08/20/2007
Release date: 03/01/2007
Hardcover - 312 pages - 978-1-84330-912-3
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This new book from Steene, a master of underwater photography, provides a detailed tour of the marine environments of the Caribbean, the Western Pacific and the Austral-Indonesian archipelago he's been exploring for 40 years with marine scientists like Gerald Allen (with whom Steene collaborated on several field guides). The colors of these underwater habitats alone are mind boggling; add an enormous cast of corals, sponges, anemones, fish and many other creatures—including some so newly discovered they haven't been named or described—and the material could become truly disorienting. Fortunately, the brief introductory text provides specific insights into the habitats included, and photo captions indicate size, location and even lens and lighting info (though a glossary of terms would have been helpful). More than 300 pages of spectacular color photos, including a vast range of species and behaviors (like mating frogfish and cuttlefish), examples of camouflage and mimicry (like a Mimic Octopus impersonating 14 different sea species, from a seasnake to a jellyfish), and astonishing color variations (more than a dozen brightly patterned flatworms), make this book hard to put down. Like visions of another world, these photographs have a magical quality that should delight anyone with an interest in animals, the sea or photography in general. (Sept.)

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