- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
Readers who enjoyed 2004's Shadow Divers will enjoy plumbing the depths of Brad Matsen's masterful Descent. Between 1930 and 1934, naturalist William Beebe and his benefactor, the adventurer Otis Barton, were lowered on a cable into the Atlantic off the coast of Bermuda. On 16 separate excursions, they traveled as deep as 3,000 feet.
Descent is the story of two men who endeavored to go where no one had gone before -- where the two tiny windows of their bathysphere caught the last bit of sunlight at 700 feet and then plunged into utter darkness. Beebe was in heaven in the oceanic abyss, while Barton patiently kept an eye on the controls necessary to keep them alive in a place unfit for human habitation.
Before their exploration, no one had ever traveled more than 350 feet into the ocean's depths and lived to tell about it. Beebe and Barton were the astronauts of their day, and in a way they knew it. "The only other place comparable to these marvelous nether regions, must surely be naked space itself, out far beyond atmosphere, between the stars, where sunlight has no grip upon dust and rubbish of planetary air," said Beebe, speaking for the two of them. In a book filled with danger and discovery, Matsen brings to life these scientific heroes of yesteryear, layering their story with suspense, historical insight and human drama. (Summer 2005 Selection)