Winter has its own undeniable charm. Low temperatures, snow, ice-covered surfaces of lakes and long evenings make us choose a weekend at home instead of packing our diving equipment in the trunk and going to the water. A comfortable armchair, a soft and warm blanket and a mug of steaming tea with raspberry juice become the perfect backdrop for reaching for a read. What to read to stay in a diving mood? How to evoke those emotions of being underwater without getting up from your chair? Here we will not recommend textbooks, books whose task is to provide us with knowledge about diving. Instead, you will find here items that are meant to arouse emotions, move and stimulate the imagination. Enjoy your reading!
As a bonus: you have here proven items that will work as a Christmas gift!
I have for you 10 proven items that will give you excitement!
2. “Gladiator of the ocean” – Mark Exley – Mark Exley is one of the most famous divers – record-breakers, and above all an author endowed with a light pen and a brilliant sense of humor. A must-have item for all who would like to become diving instructors, or already are, and have not yet reached for Exley’s book. After all, thanks to the book you will learn what are the real problems faced by instructors actively working in the industry, what completely frivolous situations can happen to you, why using Suunto RGBM algorithms in record dives is a bad idea and what can result from an ill-considered attempt to lift a sunken boat.
3. “Spirit of the Great Shoal” – Arthur C. Clarke – The works of one of the best masters of science fiction, who mixed visions of the world – the ocean, the brilliant mathematics beyond our current capabilities and the technology that makes travel to the stars possible. “Spirit of the Great Shoal” is a book about the irresistible charm of the wreck of the Titanic, which rests at the limit of the reach of human capabilities. About the legend that surrounds this wreck and that makes people risk fortunes and lives to learn its secrets. About an attraction stronger than the passing of time. A small, unassuming book that absorbs as much as the legend of the Titanic itself.
4. “Ocean Cowboys” – Arthur C. Clarke – The master of science fiction once again takes us to the sea, this time to an alternative world – the ocean, where a retired astronaut tries to find his place. About the search for life, whales and life on the water.
5. “In pursuit of the shadow”. – Robert Kurson – a story about amateur divers who find a sunken Uboat off the coast of the United States. Specialists seem to claim that the Nazi ship cannot be in such a place – but subsequent dives and the search for the identity of the submarine prove otherwise. The book, although it tells a true story and is full of technical tidbits related to, among other things, the gases used for diving, is an excellent item not only for advanced divers, but also for non-divers.
6. “The Last Dive” – Bernie Chowdhury – Since we’ve reached for the previous book, it’s also worth knowing the story of a family who paid the ultimate price for their passion and search for the identity of a Nazi Uboat sunk off the coast of Jersey Island. After all, the ship was at a depth of 70 meters, which at a time when trimix diving was not yet very popular was an insanely dangerous depth. The diving conditions themselves didn’t make things any easier either – for the cold waters of the Atlantic, variable and rather poor visibility and strong currents meant that a small mistake was enough to make things go wrong.
7. “The Call of Cthulhu” – H.P. Lovecraft – a classic of horror literature and one of the most famous authors who took horror in literature to a whole new level. It is impossible to count how many existing elements of popular culture, how many films, books, comics, paintings and sculptures were created thanks to the inspiration of Lovecraft’s works. In the long evening, it is worthwhile to immerse oneself again in the madness-soaked lands, where in the sea abysses sleeps the great eternal deity Cthulhu. An absolute classic!
8. “Terror” – Dan Simmons – the subject matter of this book has nothing to do with scuba diving, while the Arctic and maritime climate in which it is set and the fact that the story is about the famous ship Terror, which went on a research expedition in the early 19th century, makes me confidently recommend this item to all water lovers. The ship took part in expeditions to the Antarctic and the Arctic from when it was launched in 1813 until its mysterious disappearance in 1845 when it disappeared while searching for the Northwest Passage, a sea route connecting the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean. The story of the Terror and its accompanying ship, the Erebus, generated much excitement and conjecture. The shipwreck was not found until 2016, thanks to the help of an Innuit, who pointed out to members of the Arctic Research Foundation the place where he spotted fragments of wood protruding from the ice reminiscent of a mast. An unusual coincidence, which to this day has not been explained, caused the wreck to come to rest in the Bay of Terror (named after the ship in 1920, more than a century BEFORE it was known that the wreck actually rested there!). Dan Simmons skillfully combines elements of history and known facts with Innuit beliefs, the horror of a frigid, hostile land, madness creeping into the minds of the crew members and elements of fantasy. Fantastic horror literature that does not let you forget!
9. “Homo Delphinus” – Jacques Mayol – one would be hard-pressed to find a person who has not watched Luc Besson’s iconic film, “The Big Blue,” at least once. The wonderful, poetic story of two extraordinary freedivers who made their mark on the history of free diving has become a permanent part of the culture. Enzo Mollinari and Jacques Mayol created a story of friends and at the same time competitors in breaking free diving records. What was the life of a human dolphin? This book answers many questions, and leaves readers with others.
The 10th “Submerged” Verna Van Shaik – there are not many women in the world of record diving, but the story of each of them is fascinating and worth listening to. This time we can read the story of Verna Van Shaik, the holder of the deep diving record among women. Her perspective on the issues of breaking records and searching for the limit of one’s abilities is somewhat different and wildly refreshing. For Verna’s story is intertwined with those of other deep diving legends David Shaw and Nuno Gomez, all set against the backdrop of the precipitous Boesmansgat cave located in South Africa.
Enjoy your reading! If you have any recommendations, please share them with us!