Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Mapping the Deep: The Extraordinary Story of Ocean Science” as Want to Read:
Mapping the Deep: The Extraordinary Story of Ocean Science
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Mapping the Deep: The Extraordinary Story of Ocean Science

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  251 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
The sea covers seven-tenths of the Earth, but we have mapped only a small percentage of it. The sea contains millions of species of animals and plants, but we have identified only a few thousand of them. The sea controls our planet's climate, but we do not really understand how. The sea is still the frontier, and yet it seems so familiar that we sometimes forget how little ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published October 17th 2000 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published December 31st 1999)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Bob Gustafson
Sep 16, 2012 Bob Gustafson rated it it was amazing
This book is excellent. It was recommended by Professor Tobin of the University of Wisconsin during the course of one of his lectures on Oceanography in The Great Courses series.
The title is a little misleading, because the story of mapping the deep is rather sparse. Kunzig tells that story well, but that is only 40% of the book! After telling that story, he goes off Simon Winchester-ish and writes on other oceanographic topics including marine biology, marine chemistry, and the movement of ocea
Oct 09, 2016 Lehaleha rated it it was amazing
This is an amazing book I would recommend to anybody who likes life, nature and beauty. It is very well written and I was puzzled, dazzled and amused many, many times while I was reading this book. Sometimes it tells a very sad story of barbaric exploitation of this wonder of nature we are not even close to understanding. But somehow this book filled me with gentle hopeful joy after reading. Maybe because it allowed me get a glimpse of a thing of incredible beauty! :)
Sep 29, 2014 Nic rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent. Covers a wide-ranging subject in a clear and understandable manner with just a touch of poetry to the prose.
Merel Compernolle
Oct 21, 2015 Merel Compernolle rated it really liked it
"Mapping the Deep" is an extraordinary book for people with a mild interest in ocean science. It tells the story of the oceans, as well as that of its numerous inhabitants. Along with that, it shows the reader that there is a lot we can still learn about the ocean. But there is more, it also shows that we, land-dwellers, can learn about our world, and even about ourselves, by studying the ocean. I especially liked the fragment about the faunal diversity that exists on abyssal planes and in abyss ...more
Hannah Givens
Jul 27, 2015 Hannah Givens rated it really liked it
Fascinating and totally readable. There's a history of our efforts to map the deep sea, and chapters about connected topics -- not just the ocean floor, but what we know about currents and ocean layers and how the ocean developed. Really interesting for those with a comprehensive interest, and also full of fun animal tidbits and such.

Also, it's kind of sad, but from what I looked up as I went along, the book doesn't seem very out of date. Good for the reader, sad for oceanography. Still, it is
Jan 08, 2011 Mary rated it liked it
I picked this book up at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, a visit that has sparked my renewed interest in the ocean. Although a decade old now, this book recounts some of the more recent discoveries about the depths of the ocean, beginning with the startling fact that we know less about the sea than about many aspects of outer space. The most fascinating chapters come at the beginning and the end, documenting scientific efforts to map the ocean floor and the flow of water around the world. Some of the ...more
Dec 22, 2007 Jer rated it liked it
Shelves: own-it
It answered just about any question I had about the construction of the oceans... and our planet, for that matter. However, I admit, I couldn't make it though the last 80 pages or so. Just got into details that I, frankly, don't have time to read about.

The first few chapters are intense "must read"s, if you live on this planet. Then... just keep reading till you fall asleep or find yourself daydreaming, then you'll know you've had your fill. Trevor (who gave me the book) felt the same way.
Feb 26, 2010 Steve rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite books. So much so that I keep a copy in my car at all times in the event that I'm stuck waiting somewhere with nothing to read and I'm now on my second copy.
I'll confess that unless you have a real serious interest in ocean science you will probably find this a pretty dry read because it has a lot of facts and history without any drama or anything other than that to keep the reader going.
My particular favorite chapter is the one about bioluminesence and the way deep
Feb 28, 2013 Manu rated it it was amazing
This book was one of the best non-fiction books I have read. Many are too scientific and you lose intrest quickly. This one was written in a way that you understood the science , but still had a good time reading the story. I found it a lot better then Other books like the disappearing spoon because of this.
The ocean is such an interesting place because we know so little about it. this book explains what we do know about the deep and what here is to discover. Great read for anyone.
Jun 18, 2013 Terra rated it really liked it
Fascinating stuff, though slightly outdated - I'd love to read an updated version. Part of what made it a good read for me was that I started it while I was doing my open water diving certification, and so I totally got the whole "it's an amazing alien universe down there!" thing.

Of course, this book is also slightly terrifying: we need the ocean so much and there are so, so many ways to screw it up. DON'T MESS WITH THE THERMOHALINE CIRCULATION, YOU GUYS.
Jan 23, 2012 Granuaille rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2012, geology
I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in the world around us.

A well written book on the development of oceanography, exploring plate tectonics, cod fisheries, climate change (just a little), jellyfish, thermal vents, fertilision of the ocean and much much more.

This was a recommended read for Open University course on Oceanography - but it was far from a turgid textbook - it was a delightful light read but packed with information.
Jan 01, 2013 Gabriela rated it really liked it
Shelves: science, history
Good introduction to ocean natural and exploration history. If you are looking to start learning about natural history or earth systems, this book provides a gentle introduction into the topic. It is not very technical but provides a good overview including a discussion about current ocean biodiversity and over fishing.
Federico Carballo
Sep 24, 2012 Federico Carballo rated it it was amazing

Excellent book. The author has the incredible gift. He can explain complex things in an easy way and keeps it interesting. I recommend this book to anyone that is interested in basic geology and oceanography.
Sep 26, 2008 Renee rated it really liked it
This book is great. The first few chapters cover the formation of the oceans and discovery of plate techtonics.
He then goes on to cover various biological and ecolgical ocean issues.

The first half of the book is stronger but the whole thing is worth reading.
Nov 12, 2015 Fred rated it really liked it
One of my occasional nonfiction, accessible science reads. Our world is amazing and this gave me plenty of new glimpses and insights. I found myself hungry for what's been discovered since this was updated in 2000.
Rachel Greenough
Jun 28, 2007 Rachel Greenough rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone interested in the world!
This is a completely fascinating book about the history of oceanography and the science of the world's oceans. Doesn't sound fascinating? Just try it....
Feb 22, 2012 Helen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Such a wonderful book to dip in and out of. A real shame to see it out of print, so I treasure my copy even more. A favourite read on the beautiful and awe-inspiring depths of our vast oceans.
Jun 15, 2016 Kati rated it liked it
A little outdated and a little dry in parts, but a good survey of oceanography up through the year 2000.
Marie Dafgard
Sep 17, 2011 Marie Dafgard rated it it was ok
Reading for my graduate Oceanography course...this will take a while as we go from chapter to chapter.
Eve Mcfadden
Jul 30, 2010 Eve Mcfadden rated it really liked it
Shelves: on-hold
This is a well-written book for the layman, and I wish I had the concentration and time to do it justice.
Helen rated it really liked it
Jun 16, 2016
Vidas rated it liked it
Feb 14, 2016
Colin rated it it was amazing
Jan 12, 2014
Norman rated it really liked it
Dec 06, 2016
Rowan Ganner
Rowan Ganner rated it it was amazing
Jul 19, 2016
Robert Brittenham
Robert Brittenham rated it really liked it
Dec 30, 2016
OP rated it it was amazing
Feb 09, 2016
Debimac rated it it was amazing
Apr 27, 2013
Phillip Halley
Phillip Halley rated it liked it
Feb 18, 2017
Killstorm rated it it was amazing
Jul 27, 2012
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Marine Science Bo...: Mapping the deep 2 6 Aug 31, 2015 04:53AM  
  • Demon Fish: Travels Through the Hidden World of Sharks
  • The Deep: The Extraordinary Creatures of the Abyss
  • The World Is Blue: How Our Fate and the Ocean's Are One
  • The Unnatural History of the Sea
  • The Eternal Darkness: A Personal History of Deep-Sea Exploration
  • Song for the Blue Ocean: Encounters Along the World's Coasts and Beneath the Seas
  • The Wave Watcher's Companion: From Ocean Waves to Light Waves via Shock Waves, Stadium Waves, and All the Rest of Life's Undulations
  • Deep Blue Home: An Intimate Ecology of Our Wild Ocean
  • The Tapir's Morning Bath: Mysteries of the Tropical Rain Forest and the Scientists Who Are Trying to Solve Them
  • Submerged: Adventures of America's Most Elite Underwater Archeology Team
  • The End of the Line: How Overfishing Is Changing the World and What We Eat
  • Dark Banquet: Blood and the Curious Lives of Blood-Feeding Creatures
  • The Species Seekers: Heroes, Fools, and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth
  • Seven Tenths: The Sea and Its Thresholds
  • Eating the Sun: How Plants Power the Planet
  • The Flight of the Iguana: A Sidelong View of Science and Nature
  • Genesis: The Scientific Quest for Life's Origins
  • Why Elephants Have Big Ears: And Other Riddles from the Natural World

Share This Book