The waters of the Great Lakes are among the most treacherous in the world. Violent storms churn up waves and unpredictable currents capsize large vessels or cast them onto shoals and rocks where they are battered to pieces. An estimated 10,000 ships have fallen prey to the fury of the Great Lakes during the 150 years of their navigational history. This figure compares to an equal number of disasters which have occurred over the past 300 years around the British Isles. Yet despite the fascinating nature of the topic and the enormity of the problem, there has been an absence of informative published material on this theme. James P. Barry's Wrecks and Rescues of the Great Lakes fills the gap. Shipwrecks on the Great Lakes began almost as soon as there were ships to be wrecked. One of the first vessels built there by the French, the Frontenac, was wrecked in 1679. The book reveals the severity of the weather through dramatic photographs of shipwrecks, and graphic descriptions of the events surrounding them. The Victorian and Edwardian wrecks on the Canadian shore are depicted in minute detail. The photographs of the wrecks on the American side between 1881 and 1910 show the frailty of those vessels. However, the more modern ships of the '20s and '30s were not immune to the power of the lakes. This fact becomes increasing clear in the depiction of recent disasters and daring rescue attempts. The moving description of the tragic loss of the Edmund Fitzgerald makes the reader keenly aware of the present dangers.