BOAT BOOKS: How to find a nautical coffeetable book - page six of our huge WORLDWIDE range of presentable nautical and marine coffeetable books.

Gift Books Page Three.


  • Island Dreams
  • The Golden Atlas
  • Nautical Works
  • Pacific - An Ocean of Wonders
  • The Sea Journal
  • Explorers' Sketchbooks
  • Travels of Marco Polo
  • Charting the Oceans
  • Maps that Changed the World
  • The Sea Chart
  • Maps. Their Untold Story
  • Voyaging the World's Civil Engineering Wonders.
  • Seamanship in the Age of Sail
  • Nelson Navy & Nation
  • The History of Seafaring
  • Britain's Historic Ships
  • Ship - A History in Art & Photography
  • A Seaman's Pocket-Book
  • The Royal Navy Officer's Pocket-Book
  • The Warship Anne

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    ISLAND DREAMS. Mapping an Obsession
    By Gavin Francis. Hardback, 0.63kgs. 160mm x 220mm, 246 pages. Published 2020. Line drawings, Maps, Charts, Sepia and full colour images.

    In Island Dreams, Gavin Francis examines our collective fascination with islands. He blends stories of his own travels with psychology, philosophy and great voyages from literature, shedding new light on the importance of islands and isolation in our collective consciousness.

    Comparing the life of freedom of thirty years of extraordinary travel from the Faroe Islands to the Aegean, from the Galapagos to the Andaman Islands with a life of responsibility as a doctor, community member and parent approaching middle age.

    Illustrated with maps throughout, this is a celebration of human adventures in the world and within our minds.

    NZ$45.00 + Delivery.

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    By Edward Brooke-Hitching. Hardback, 0.96kgs. 200mm x 255mm, 256 pages. Published 2018. Line drawings, Maps, Charts, Sepia and full colour images.

    A spectacular visual history of exploration and cartography, a treasure chest of adventures from the chronicles of global discovery, illustrated with a selection of the most beautiful maps ever created.

    The book reveals how the world came to be known, featuring a magnificent gallery of exceptionally rare hand-coloured antique maps, paintings and engravings, many of which can only be found in the author's collection. Arranged chronologically, the reader is taken on a breathtaking expedition through Ancient Babylonian geography and Marco Polo's journey to the Mongol Khan on to buccaneers ransacking the Caribbean and the voyages of seafarers such as Captain Cook and fearless African pathfinders.

    Their stories are told in an engaging and compelling style, bringing vividly to life a motley collection of heroic explorers, treasure-hunters and death-dealing villains - all of them accompanied by eye-grabbing illustrations from rare maps, charts and manuscripts.

    The Golden Atlas takes you back to a world of darkness and peril, placing you on storm-lashed ships, frozen wastelands and the shores of hostile territories to see how the lines were drawn to form the shape of the modern world.

    NZ$55.00 + Delivery.

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    By Jacques Devaulx. Hardcover, 3.09kgs. 280mm x 400mm, 264 pages. Multilingual Edition. Full colour illustrations. Published 2018.

    In 1583 French maritime pilot Jacques De Vaulx produced a beautifully illustrated compedium of navigational tools and information for Duke Anne de Joyeuse, who had commisioned it. This sumptuous reproduction of that work also includes expert commentary on the original, a primer on the world's geography at that time, and descriptions of the navigational tools that were in use.

    An encyclopedic reference for sailors, as well as a magnificent maritime showpiece for his royal employers, the elaborately annotated and decorated folios are a repertoire of naval and cosmographic tools and techniques, including astrolabes, nautical charts of the Atlantic Ocean, tabular statements of diurnal tides, astrological charts, and measurements for solar altitude. They also gather Devaulx’s volvelles, wheel charts made of rotating parts that are today considered an early example of the paper analog computer. Together, the folios encapsulate the state of knowledge at a time when sailors pushed the limits of sea exploration and offer a glimpse into the practical daily requirements of Renaissance seafaring.

    NZ$280.00 + Delivery.

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    By Philip J. Hatfield. Hardcover, 1.36kgs. 288mm x 226mm, 224 pages. Full colour and black & white illustrations. Published 2019.

    If you centre a globe on Kiritimati (Christmas Island), all you see around it is a vast expanse of ocean. Islands of various sizes float in view while glimpses of continents encroach on the fringes, but this is a view dominated by water. The immense stretch of the Pacific Ocean is inhabited by a diverse array of peoples and cultures bound by a common thread: their relationship with the sea.
    The rich history of the Pacific is explored through specific objects, each one beautifully illustrated, from the earliest human engagement with the Pacific through to the modern day. With entries covering mapping, trade, whaling, flora and fauna, and the myriad vessels used to traverse the ocean, Pacific builds on recent interest in the voyages of James Cook to tell a broader history.
    This visually stunning publication highlights the importance of an ocean that covers very nearly a third of the surface of the globe, and which has dramatically shaped the world and people around it.

    NZ$50.00 + Delivery.

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    By Huw Lewis-Jones. Hardcover, 1.38kgs. 275mm x 195mm, 304 pages. Published 2019. Colour Images and Photographs.

    The sea has been an endless source of fascination, at once both alluring and mysterious, a place of wonder and terror. The Sea Journal contains first-hand records by a great range of travellers of their encounters with strange creatures and new lands, full of dangers and delights, pleasures and perils.

    In this remarkable gathering of private journals, log books, letters and diaries, we follow the voyages of intrepid sailors, from the frozen polar wastes to South Seas paradise islands, as they set down their immediate impressions of all they saw. They capture their experiences while at sea, giving us a precious view of the oceans and the creatures that live in them as they were when they were scarcely known and right up to the present day. In a series of biographical portraits, we meet officers and ordinary sailors, cooks and whalers, surgeons and artists, explorers and adventurers. A handful of contemporary mariners provide their thoughts on how keeping a journal remains integral to their voyaging lives.

    Often still bearing the traces of their nautical past, the intriguing and enchanting sketches and drawings in this book brilliantly capture the spirit of the oceans and the magic of the sea.

    The seafarers include:

  • Jeanne Baret
  • William Bligh
  • Francis Chichester
  • Vasco da Gama
  • Francis Drake
  • Zheng He
  • Horatio Nelson
  • Antonio Pigafetta
  • Piri Reis
  • Georg Steller
  • Bartholomew Sharp
  • Tupaia
  • Susan Veeder

    NZ$70.00 + Delivery.

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    By Huw Lewis_jones & Kari Herbert. Hardcover, 1.44kgs. 275mm x 195mm, 320 pages. Reprinted 2018. Colour Images and Photographs.

    Despite dramatic advances in technology and equipment over the centuries, there is one vital piece of kit in most explorers’ pockets that hasn’t changed much at all – the journal.

    The sketchbooks and journals presented here allow us the opportunity to share, through their own eyes and thoughts, the on-the-spot reactions of around 70 intrepid individuals as they journeyed into frozen waters, high mountains, barren deserts and rich rainforests. Some are well known, such as Captain Scott, Charles Darwin, Thor Heyerdahl and Abel Tasman; others are unfamiliar, including Adela Breton, who braved the jungles of Mexico to make an unparalleled record of Maya monuments, and Alexandrine Tinne, who died in her attempt to be the first woman to cross the Sahara. Here are pioneering explorers and map-makers, botanists and artists, ecologists and anthropologists, eccentrics and visionaries, men and women. A handful of living explorers, including Wade Davis, provide their thoughts on the art of exploration.

    Often battered and neglected, stored away and perhaps long forgotten, many of these sketchbooks have themselves awaited rediscovery. Now is the chance to open them again.

    NZ$70.00 + Delivery.

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    By Ed. Morris Rosssabi. Hardcover, 1.84kgs. 240mm x 260mm, 377 pages. Published 2012. Colour Images and Photographs.

    Marco Polo was the most famous traveller of his time. His voyages began in 1271 with a visit to China, after which he served the Kubilai Khan on numerous diplomatic missions. On his return to the West he was made a prisoner of war and met Rustichello of Pisa, with whom he collaborated on this book. The accounts of his travels provide a fascinating glimpse of the different societies he encountered. He tells the story of the holy shoemaker, the wicked caliph and the three kings, among a great many others, evoking a remote and fascinating world with colour and immediacy.

    (Marco Polo's writings were shrouded in controversy for many years as many people claimed he never actually reached China. However, recent research has confirmed that Marco Polo did indeed reach the fabulous domain of Khubilai Khan)

    This beautiful illustrated coffeetable book includes magnificent reproductions of art and artifacts as well as insightful captions, footnotes, and excerpts from pertinent works of history and literature.

    Was NZ$60.00 + Delivery.
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    By Peter Whitfield. Softcover, 1.06kgs. 220mm x 280mm, 207 pages. Published 2018. Line drawings, Maps, Charts, Sepia and full colour images.

    This revised and updated book traces the history of charts as eloquent witnesses to the discovery of the world beyond Europe, and to man’s evolving knowledge of the oceans. These charts expressed man’s passionate feeling for the sea: the gilded compasses, the nightmarish sea-creatures, the stately ships, the royal crests – all these were fused into a unique artistic practice, which flourished for four centuries.

    Featuring new photography of the British Library’s most important maritime maps.
    Charting the Oceans is the definitive guide to this majestic art form.

    NZ$50.00 + Delivery.

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    By John O E Clark. Hardcover, 1.02kgs. 198mm x 254mm, 255 pages. Published 2016. Line drawings, Black and White and full colour images.

    An ancient Chinese proverb suggests, "They are wise parents who give their children roots and wings - and a map." Maps That Changed the World features some of the world's most famous maps, stretching back to a time when cartography was in its infancy and the 'edge of the world' was a barrier to exploration. The book includes details of how the Lewis and Clark Expedition helped map the American West, and how the British mapped India and Australia. Included are the beautifully engraved Dutch maps of the 16th century; the sinister Utopian maps of the Nazis; the maps that presaged brilliant military campaigns; charted the geology of a nation; and the ones that divided a continent up between its European conquerors.

    Organised by theme, the book shows the evolution of map-making from all corners of the globe, from ancient clay maps, to cartographic breakthroughs such as Harry Beck's map of the London underground. There are also famous fictional maps, including the maps of the lost continent of Atlantis and Tolkien's Middle Earth.

    NZ$36.00 + Delivery.

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    By John Blake. Hardcover, 1.74kgs. 290mm x 307mm, 192 pages. 2nd edition published 2016. Full Colour illustrations.

    The world took shape through the development of the sea chart and its visual representation of European exploration and trade, conquest and colonization. While the early maps and charts are absorbing in their often fantastic and distorted views of newly discovered lands, the surveying work in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries by men such as Cook, Vancouver and Flinders, in small open boats along treacherous stretches of coastline, intrigue and make us wonder just how they achieved such extraordinary levels of accuracy.
    This book examines the history of the sea chart in both aesthetic and scientific terms. The illustrations include the early portolan charts of the fifteenth century, original manuscript charts of Europe, India and the Orient, and nautical maps that show the medieval view of the known world. Others illustrate the ships’ tracks of the Arctic and Antarctic explorers, the buccaneer’s view of colonial South America and the meticulous surveys of the coastlines of North America and Australia. Pages are further enhanced with navigational views, extracts from master’s remark books and sailing directions and accounts of voyages.
    This second edition has been expanded to include more than 40 further illustrations. They add to our understanding of the medieval world that intrepid explorers from Spain, Portugal and then Holland, France and Britain charted. Groping their way across the oceans with discovery after discovery they threw back the boundaries of geographical knowledge, presenting them to an eager Europe of monarchs, princes, traders and thinkers.

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    By Rose Mitchell & Andrew Janes. Hardback, 1.72kg, 285mm x 290mm, 253 pages, Sepia and full colour reproductions. Published in 2014.
    A map is a snapshot of a place, a city, a nation or even the world at a given point in time-fascinating for what they tell us about the way our ancestors saw themselves, their neighbours and their place in the world. This magnificent collection, drawn from seven centuries of maps held in the National Archives at Kew, looks at a variety of maps, from those found in 14th Century manuscripts, through early estate maps, to sea charts, maps used in military campaigns, and maps from treaties.

    The text explores who the mapmakers were, the purposes for which the maps were made, and what it tells us about the politics of the time. Great images are accompanied by compelling stories. Featured is a woodcut map of 16th Century London, a map of where the bombs fell during the Second World War, and a map the first American settlers' drew when they were attempting to establish a new empire on Roanoke Island, off the coast of what is now North Carolina.

    Richly illustrated with large scale reproductions of the maps, the book also includes some of the more amusing or esoteric maps from the National Archives, such as the map of the Great Exhibition in 1851 that was presented on a lady's glove, a London Underground map in the form of a cucumber, and a Treasure Island map used to advertise National Savings.

    This is a fascinating and unusual journey through the world of maps and mapmakers.

    NZ$75.00 + delivery.

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    By John Laverick. Hardcover, 0.95kgs. 255mm x 230mm, 192 pages. Published 2017, Colour and Black and White photographs.
    Examples of enduring feats of civil engineering endeavour can be seen around the world’s seas and waterways, from the SS Great Britain to the Panama Canal.
    In this beautifully illustrated book, John Laverick offers an insight into the intriguing field of civil engineering, taking you on a journey that crosses three continents and three centuries, exploring extraordinary achievements including the artificial waterways of the Panama and Suez canals, floating concepts such as the concrete Mulberry harbours, the world’s only rotating ship lift at Falkirk, a man-made island in the Baltic linking the crossings between two countries and the ambitious restoration of the Wilts & Berks Canal.

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    An account of the shiphandling of the sailing man-of-war, 1600 -1860 By John Harland. Hardcover, 1.86kgs. 255mm x 300mm, 319 pages. Published 2015. Line drawings, Black and White photographs.

    A modern, objective appraisal of the development of seamanship among the major navies of the world from the 17th to the 19th century.

    Numerous successful reprints of contemporary works on rigging and seamanship indicate the breadth of interest in the lost art of handling square-rigged ships. Modelmakers, marine painters and enthusiasts need to know not only how the ships were rigged but how much sail was set in each condition of wind and sea, how the various manoeuvres were carried out, and the intricacies of operations like reefing sails or 'catting' an anchor. Contemporary treatises such as Brady's Kedge Anchor in the USA or Darcy Lever's Sheet Anchor in Britain tell only half the story, for they were training manuals intended to be used at sea in conjunction with practical experiences and often only cover officially-condoned practices.

    This book, on the other hand, is a modern, objective appraisal of the evidence, concerned with the actualities as much as the theory. The author has studied virtually every manual published about seamanship over a period of nearly four centuries. This gives the book a completely international balance and allows him to describe for the first time the proper historical development of seamanship among the major navies of the world.

    NZ$110.00 + Delivery.

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    By Ed. Quintin Colville & James Davey. Hardcover, 1.17kgs. 198mm x 254mm, 240 pages. Full colour photographs, illustrations and maps. Published 2013.
    Explores the Royal Navy’s relationship with Britain from the Glorious Revolution to the Napoleonic Wars, encompassing three central themes: the realities of naval life in this period, the navy’s connection to society, culture and national identity, and the story of Nelson’s life and career.

    This book illustrates and explains the more than century of bitter conflict, against which, the Navy rose to unprecedented prominence. For those serving at sea, it was a world apart: from the food and drink they consumed to the terrifying realities of battle in the age of sail. But Naval affairs also had immediate relevance for the people ashore - male and female, young or old, rich and poor. At times of crisis they tutned to the Navy as their last line of defence against powerful and determined enemies. In moments of success they marked its victories with celebrations that stretched from country fairs to city crowds...

    Published to accompany a long-term gallery at the National Maritime Museum, this book highlights many key objects from the gallery and includes previously unseen material.

    A beautiful, lavishly illustrated volume

    NZ$50.00 + Delivery.

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    By Donald S.Johnson and Juha Nurminen. Hardback, 2.74kg, 260mm x 350mm, 374 pages, full colour photographs, maps and illustrations.
    The seaways were the first global network and they irrevocably linked the destinies of geographically and culturally distant peoples. The History of Seafaring is the definitive volume on navigation and exploration and recounts the motives that drove Europeans to seek routes to the far corners of the globe and in particular the seamanship that made their voyages possible. Fully international in its approach, this outstanding book pieces together the advances in astronomy, navigation, shipbuilding, seamanship and cartography down the ages to tell the fascinating and absorbing story of mankind's relationship with the sea. This story is presented in an elegant format and is richly illustrated with a beautiful selection of rutters and portolan charts, photographs of ship's instruments and artefacts and maritime paintings.

    This is what Dava Sobel, the author of Longitude thinks about this book:
    "This is a fearless book that has crested waves an tasted salt. Its compass measures as wide as the sea itself, stretching from the dawn of navigation by sun and stars up to the time when the wireless telegraph was adapted at sea. As one would expect - as one would hope - the author, Donald S,Johnson, is experienced not only as a historian but also as a sailor who has crossed the Atlantic single-handedly in a small boat several times. To read The History of Seafaring is to voyage vicariously through 3000 years of maritime history with no fear of getting lost"

    NZ$99.00 + delivery.

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    By Paul Brown, Softback, 220m x 285mm, 208 pages, full colour and monochrome photographs.
    From Dundee to Plymouth, the Bristol Channel to the Thames, Britain's ports and waterways display an exceptional collection of preserved ships and boats. This historic fleet ranges from the mighty First Rate ship-of-the-line Victory to humble harbour craft. The oldest is the salvaged hull of the 500-year-old Mary Rose; the youngest is the guided-missile destroyer, HMS Bristol. What unites them is that they are the last of their kind, which, due to the diligent work of trusts and individuals, have undergone intensive restoration to maintain them for posterity. Some are now in private ownership, but the majority are open to the public, and each one has a unique story to tell.
    There are those that have taken part in great naval battles and campaigns - Trafalgar, Jutland and Gallipoli, D-Day and Dunkirk, Korea, the Falklands and the Gulf War. Others represent supreme feats of engineering such as the steamship Great Britian, and great leaps in ship technology such as HMS Warrior. Some, such as the clipper ship Cutty Sark, took part in the legendary tea races, or were involved in exploration, such as Scott's polar research ship Discovery. Then there are the innumerable little vessels that plied their trade in and around the coasts of Britain - sailing barges, ketches and coasters - and the paddle steamers which brought holiday-makers to the sea-side and which are still available for excursions today on the Scottish lochs and English rivers. Together they represent the very best of our maritime heirtage, to be enjoyed by all. Their histories and preservation are all failthfully documented and a list of web addresses is provided for opening times and further details. In addition to the featured ships and boats, an appendix lists a further 50 vessels (of 60 feet or more) in the Core and Designated Lists of the National Historic Ships Register with their location.

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    By Andrew Lambert. Hardback, 2.23kg, 248mm x 287mm, 378 pages, full colour and monochrome illustrations and paintings. Published 2010.
    This book brings together 360 of the most celebrated ships in history and fiction in one stylishly produced volume. Each has a unique tale to tell, the dramatic stories immortalized in evocative artworks or documented in startling photography. Themes include exploration and scientific discovery, mutiny and piracy, shipwreck, cannibalism and survival. Ships that excelled in battle or were lost in devastating circumstances are represented, along with those that heralded revolutionary developments in maritime and naval architecture. International in scope, the book uses a signature image of each ship as a starting point with explanatory text from experts in the fields of sailing warships, battleships, ancient and medieval vessels, expeditionary ships, liners and famous literary ships. While each has a fascinating story to tell, together they make up not just a history of the ship, but also of human progress, imagination and tragedy.

    NZ$65.00 + Delivery

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    By Authority of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. Hardback, 125mm x 187mm, 120 pages, monochrome illustrations.
    Acutely aware that the Royal Navy's wartime fighting efficiency relied upon each man's grasp of his own job, the Admiralty issued this special pocket book in December 1943 to all new ratings to help them acquire the "sea sense" so vital to life in the navy.
    Using simple yet absorbing prose and clear diagrams, it outlines all the tasks, skills, terms, conventions and knowledge a seaman needed to know by heart: from slinging his hammock to heaving the lead; from plugging a gushing shell hole to navigating a narrow channel at night; from anchor and rope work to uniform rules and tobacco allowances.
    With an introduction by historian Brian Lavery, this impressively compact volume, faithfully reproduced over sixty years after its first publication, is a unique evocation of the rules of life on the lower deck of the busy wartime Royal Navy.

    NZ$25.00 + delivery.

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    By Authority of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. Hardback, 125mm x 187mm, 145 pages, monochrome illustrations. Reprinted 2015
    Presented in the same format as 'The Seaman's Pocket-Book', The Royal Navy Officer's Pocket-book gathers together useful advice and instruction for those naval officers fighting the Second World War on all aspects of their job, expressed in the benevolent language of the day, when authority was respected. The Handbook has been compiled and edited by Brian Lavery, who provides commentary and an introduction.

    Sections include: the Officer's Aid Memoire containing notes of the training course at one of the officer training schools; Notes for medical officers and treatment of battle casualties afloat; Notes for captains on taking command of their first ship; Notes for commanding officers; Notes on the handling and safety of ships and notes on dealing with disobedience and mutiny.

    While suffused with nostalgia and charm, the various contents of this book are an authentic presentation of matters of training, authority and deportment in the wartime navy.

    The book is sure to appeal not only to those who served in the war or had a relative who was in the officer class, but also to anyone who wants to gain a greater understanding of the day-to-day administration of the wartime navy

    NZ$25.00 + delivery.

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    By Richard Endsor. Hardback, .90kg, 160 Pages. 255mm x 255mm, Full colour, sepia photographs and drawings. Published 2017.

    The Anne was launched in 1678 and was lost in 1690 at the battle of Beachy Head.

    Although the importance of Beachy Head ranks alongside the Armada Campaign and the Battle of Trafalgar, it was not a glorious victory to celebrate and be remembered. In fact, the outnumbered English and Dutch allies were forced into ignomimious retreat during which the dismasted Anne was run ashore between Rye and hastings and burnt to prevent capture. She was the only British loss although many Dutch ships were abandoned, burned and sunk.

    Ship's historian and draughtsman Richard Endsor has written a meticulously researched account and history of this wonderful and accessible seventeenth century Warship. and the beautiful and accurate drawings and paintings bring this Flagship, from the era of Charles II to life.

    Intriguingly, the wreck can still be seen at Hastings on the UK's south coast at low tide where the receding waves reveal the remarkably complete mortal remains.

    Today the wreck is owned by the Shipwreck Museum at Hastings and in the past few years there have been some attempts to bring the ship back to life using advanced simulation and modeling techniques.

    NZ$40.00 + Delivery.

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