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The Science and Spirit of the Ocean

Jonathan White (author), Peter Matthiessen (foreword)

A global journey through the science and wonder of the oceans

In Tides, writer, sailor, and surfer Jonathan White takes readers across the globe to discover the science and spirit of ocean tides. In the Arctic, White shimmies under the ice with an Inuit elder to hunt for mussels in the dark cavities left behind at low tide; in China, he races the Silver Dragon, a twenty-five-foot tidal bore that crashes eighty miles up the Qiantang River; in France, he interviews the monks that live in the tide-wrapped monastery of Mont Saint-Michel; in Chile and Scotland, he investigates the growth of tidal power generation; and in Panama and Venice, he delves into how the threat of sea level rise is changing human culturethe very old and very new. Tides combines lyrical prose, colorful adventure travel, and provocative scientific inquiry into the elemental, mysterious paradox that keeps our planet’s waters in constant motion. Scientific figures, line drawings, black and white photography throughout, and a color photo insert dramatically illustrate this engaging, expert tour of the tides.


  • Winner of Publishing Professionals Network Best Book Award for Trade, Text-Driven
  • Designated as Finalist for National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine 2018 Communication Awards
  • Winner of 2018 Next Generation Indie Book Awards - Science/Nature
  • Designated as Finalist 2018 da Vinci Eye Book Award
  • Winner of Foreword Indies Award BRONZE Winner for Science
  • Winner of Nautilus Book Award - Silver for Nature & Science
  • Winner of Silver IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award for Nature & Environment
  • Winner of 2018 Eric Hoffer Book Award - Culture Category
  • Winner of 2018 Pacific Northwest Bookseller Association Book Award
  • Winner of National Outdoor Book Awards - Natural History Literature Category
  • Designated as Finalist 17th Annual Awards for Reporting on the Environment from Society of Environmental Journalists


“A wonderfully paced account.... White offers clear explanations of how tides work and scientific giants such as Aristotle, Copernicus ... and others helped us get where we are today.”

Wall Street Journal

“Conservationist Jonathan White combines scientific investigation with personal memoir in this solid examination of the nature of tides and waves.”

Publishers Weekly

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Tides cover
  • Price: $18.95
  • Pages: 360
  • Size: 9 X 6
  • Published: Jun 2018
  • Status: Available
  • ISBN: 9781595348517
  • Price: $28.00
  • Pages: 360
  • Size: 6 X 9
  • Published: Feb 2017
  • Status: Out of print
  • ISBN: 9781595348050
  • Price: $28.00
  • Published: Feb 2016
  • Status: Available
  • ISBN: 9781595348067