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Sir Joseph Banks was a man of passion whose influence spanned the globe. A fearless adventurer, his fascination with beautiful women was only trumped by his obsession with the natural world and his lust for scientific knowledge.
Fabulously wealthy, Banks was the driving force behind monumental voyages and scientific discoveries in Australia, New Zealand, the South pacific, Europe, North America, South America, Asia, Africa and the Arctic. In 1768, as a galivanting young playboy, he joined Captain James Cook’s Endeavour expedition to the South Pacific. Financing his own team of scientists and artists, Banks battled high seas, hailstorms, treacherous coral reefs and hostile locals to expand the world’s knowledge of life on distant shores. He returned with thousands of specimens of plants and animals, generating enormous interest in Europe, while the racy accounts of his amorous adventures in Tahiti made him one of the most famous and notorious men in England.
As the longest-serving president of Britain’s Royal Society, Banks was perhaps the most important man in the scientific world for more than half a century. It was Banks, one of the first Europeans to set foot on Australia’s east coast, who advised Britain to establish a remote penal settlement and strategic base at Botany Bay, and he eventually became the foremost expert on everything Australian. Early governors in the colony answered to him as he set about unleashing Australia’s vast potential in agriculture and minerals. For decades, major British voyages of exploration around the globe only sailed with his backing.
Banks is a rich and rollicking biography of one of the most colourful and intriguing characters in the history of exploration.
NZ$45.00 + delivery.
A fascinating exploration of new and disappearing islands around the world.
New islands are being built at an unprecedented rate whether for tourism or territorial ambition, while many islands are disappearing because of rising sea levels or fragmenting due to shrinking ice.
It is a strange planetary spectacle, an ever-changing map which even Google Earth struggles to keep pace with. But it is also, Alastair Bonnett believes, a spectacle which is imprinting itself on our hopes and anxieties.
From a 'crannog', an ancient artificial island in a Scottish loch, to the militarized artificial islands China is building in the South China Sea, he sets out to explore some of the world's newest, most fragile and beautiful islands to find out why they have such a hold on our imaginations.
NZ$35.00 + delivery.
How Exploration created the Modern World and will take us to the Stars.
An illuminating chronicle of exploration that spotlights humans’ insatiable desire to continually push into new and uncharted territory, from civilization’s earliest days to current planning for interstellar travel.
For the first time in history, the human species has the technology to destroy itself. But having developed that power, humans are also able to leave Earth and voyage into the vastness of space. After millions of years of evolution, we’ve arrived at the point where we can settle other worlds and begin the process of becoming multi-planetary. How did we get here? What does the future hold for us?
Beyond the Known examines major periods of discovery and rediscovery, from Classical Times, when Phoenicians, Persians and Greeks ventured forth; to The Age of European Exploration, which saw colonies sprout on nearly continent; to The Era of Scientific Inquiry, when researchers developed brand new tools for mapping and traveling farther; to Our Spacefaring Future, which unveils plans currently underway for settling other planets and, eventually, traveling to the stars.
About the Author: Andrew Rader is an MIT-credentialed scientist, popular podcast host, and SpaceX mission manager.
NZ$42.00 + delivery.
A comprehensive, fascinating and inspiring gallery of the great adventures that changed our world.
Throughout history there have been brave men and women who dared to go where few had gone before. They broke new ground by drawing on incredible reserves of courage, fortitude and intelligence in the face of terrible adversity. Their endeavours changed the world and inspired generations.
Spanning several centuries and united by the common theme of the resilience of the human spirit, this is the ultimate collection of the stories of the intrepid explorers who forged new frontiers across land, sea, skies and space.
Great Expeditions includes not only some of the most famous journeys in history but also introduces many more that ought to be more widely recognised and celebrated.
NZ$35.00 + delivery.
For more than 5,000 years, the sea has challenged, rewarded, and punished the brave sailors who set forth to explore it. This history of the sea and sailing tells the remarkable story of those individuals–whether they lived to tell the tale themselves (or not). From the early Polynesian seafarers and the first full circumnavigations of the globe, to explorers picking their way through the coral reefs of the West Indies, this book tells the compelling story of life at sea that lies behind man’s search for new lands, new trade, conquest, and uncharted waters. The great milestones of nautical history from the discovery of America to the establishment of the Royal Navy, the naval history of the Civil War, the Battle of Midway and modern piracy are all charted and set in their cultural and historical context.
A Short History of Seafaring is a unique compendium of awe-inspiring tales of epic sea voyages that always involve great feats of seamanship, navigation, endurance, and ingenuity.
NZ$28.00 + delivery.
Vanuatu. Marshall Islands. Fiji. The names evoke white-sand beaches, swaying palms and lazy holidays. But in reality, these idyllic places are tropical maelstroms of global realpolitik, caught between the world's superpowers, former colonial masters and tin-pot despots. Collectively the Pacific nations, which form one third of the globe's surface area, are one of the most strategically important regions in the world - for military might, for energy security and geopolitical borders. Even more importantly, these nations are at the frontline of climate change, as rising sea levels, salinity, cyclones and pollution put their very existence at stake.
Based on his extensive travels in the Pacific, Tom Bamforth shows us the people of the islands, their cultures and how they live in these remote and increasingly challenging places. From uprisings in New Caledonia to tsunamis in Tonga, this is a book about interaction, race, colonisation, climate change, nuclear testing, resistance, cultural preservation, urban life, the tastiness of well roasted pig, and the pleasures of canoeing at dusk.
This book is both an insider's and an outsider's view of life in the Pacific, rendered in vivid detail and colour.
Gripping and beautifully written, The Rising Tide masterfully weaves the stories of people at the forefront of global change around a broader narrative of political mismanagement, culture, diplomacy and identity.
NZ$35.00 + delivery.
A thrilling intellectual detective story that looks deep into the past to uncover who first settled the islands of the remote Pacific, where they came from, how they got there, and how we know.
For more than a millennium, Polynesians have occupied the remotest islands in the Pacific Ocean, a vast triangle stretching from Hawaii to New Zealand to Easter Island. Until the arrival of European explorers they were the only people to have ever lived there. Both the most closely related and the most widely dispersed people in the world before the era of mass migration, Polynesians can trace their roots to a group of epic voyagers who ventured out into the unknown in one of the greatest adventures in human history.
How did the earliest Polynesians find and colonize these far-flung islands? How did a people without writing or metal tools conquer the largest ocean in the world? This conundrum, which came to be known as the Problem of Polynesian Origins, emerged in the eighteenth century as one of the great geographical mysteries of mankind.
For Christina Thompson, this mystery is personal: her Maori husband and their sons descend directly from these ancient navigators. In Sea People, Thompson explores the fascinating story of these ancestors, as well as those of the many sailors, linguists, archaeologists, folklorists, biologists, and geographers who have puzzled over this history for three hundred years.
A masterful mix of history, geography, anthropology, and the science of navigation, Sea People combines the thrill of exploration with the drama of discovery in a vivid tour of one of the most captivating regions in the world.
NZ$38.00 + delivery.
A saga of sex, sedition, mayhem and mutiny, and survival against extraordinary odds
The mutiny on HMS Bounty, in the South Pacific on 28 April 1789, is one of history's truly great stories - a tale of human drama, intrigue and adventure of the highest order - and in the hands of Peter FitzSimons it comes to life as never before.
Commissioned by the Royal Navy to collect breadfruit plants from Tahiti and take them to the West Indies, the Bounty's crew found themselves in a tropical paradise. Five months later, they did not want to leave. Under the leadership of Fletcher Christian most of the crew mutinied soon after sailing from Tahiti, setting Captain William Bligh and 18 loyal crewmen adrift in a small open boat. In one of history's great feats of seamanship, Bligh navigated this tiny vessel for 3618 nautical miles to Timor.
Fletcher Christian and the mutineers sailed back to Tahiti, where most remained and were later tried for mutiny. But Christian, along with eight fellow mutineers and some Tahitian men and women, sailed off into the unknown, eventually discovering the isolated Pitcairn Island - at the time not even marked on British maps - and settling there.
This astonishing story is historical adventure at its very best,encompassing the mutiny, Bligh's monumental achievement in navigating to safety, and Fletcher Christian and the mutineers' own epic journey from the sensual paradise of Tahiti to the outpost of Pitcairn Island. The mutineers' descendants live on Pitcairn to this day, amid swirling stories and rumours of past sexual transgressions and present-day repercussions. Mutiny on the Bounty is a sprawling, dramatic tale of intrigue, bravery and sheer boldness, told with the accuracy of historical detail and total command of story that are Peter FitzSimons' trademarks.
NZ$40.00 + delivery.
Unimpeded by any landmass, the mysterious Southern Ocean flows completely around Earth from west to east between the seasonally shifting icy continent of Antarctica and the coastlines and islands of Australia, New Zealand, South America and South Africa.
Weaving together sea captains’ journals, whalers’ log books, explorers’ letters, scientific research and ancient beliefs with her own voyage of discovery, Joy McCann reveals the secrets of a little-known ocean and its importance as a barometer of climate change.
NZ$40.00 + delivery.
The enlightenment was an age of endeavours. From Johnson’s Dictionary to campaigns for liberty to schemes for measuring the dimensions of the solar system, Britain was consumed by the impulse for grand projects, undertaken at speed. Endeavour was also the name given to a Whitby collier bought by the Royal Navy in 1768 for an expedition to the South Seas. No one could have guessed that Endeavour, a commonplace, coal carrying vessel, would go on to become the most significant ship in the history of British exploration
Endeavour famously carried Captain James Cook on his first great voyage, visiting Pacific islands unknown to European geography, charting New Zealand and the eastern coast of Australia for the first time and almost foundering on Great Barrier Reef. But Endeavour was a ship with many lives. She was there at the Wilkes Riots in London in 1768, and during battles for control of New York in 1776, she witnessed the bloody birth of the United States of America. As well as carrying botanists, a Polynesian priest and the remains of the first kangaroo to arrive in Britain, she transported Newcastle coal and Hessian soldiers. According to Charles Darwin, she helped Cook add a hemisphere to the civilised world. NASA named a space shuttle after her. To others she would be a toxic symbol, responsible for the dispossession of the oldest continuous human society and the disruption of many others.
No one has ever told Endeavour’s complete story before. Peter Moore sets out to explore the different lives of this remarkable ship and her rich and complex legacy.
NZ$40.00 + Delivery
For more than a century and a half, a grim tale has passed down through Michael Veitch’s family: the story of the Ticonderoga, a clipper ship that sailed from Liverpool in August 1852, crammed with poor but hopeful emigrants – mostly Scottish victims of the Clearances and the potato famine. A better life, they believed, awaited them in Australia.
Three months later, a ghost ship crept into Port Phillip Bay flying the dreaded yellow flag of contagion. On her horrific three-month voyage, deadly typhus had erupted, killing a quarter of Ticonderoga’s passengers and leaving many more desperately ill. Sharks, it was said, had followed her passage as the victims were buried at sea.
Panic struck Melbourne. Forbidden to dock at the gold-boom town, the ship was directed to a lonely beach on the far tip of the Mornington peninsula, a place now called Ticonderoga Bay
James Henry William Veitch was the ship’s assistant surgeon, on his first appointment at sea. Among the volunteers who helped him tend to the sick and dying was a young woman from the island of Mull, Annie Morrison. What happened between them on that terrible voyage is a testament to human resilience and to love.
Michael Veitch is their great-great-grandson, and Hell Ship is his brilliantly researched narrative of one of the biggest stories of its day, now all but forgotten. Broader than his own family’s story, it brings to life the hardships and horrors endured by those who came by sea to seek a new life in Australia.
NZ$25.00 + Delivery
The Art of the French Voyages to French Polynesia.
This bilingual book brings to attention the artwork by French navigators and scientists in French Polynesia during the great voyages of exploration of the Pacific in the 18th and 19th centuries – by Bougainville, Dumont d’Urville, etc.
Following the format of a similar work on New Zealand (2000), it reproduces a selection of 60 images which include engravings, watercolours, maps and sketches, some of which have never before been published. Prior to the invention of photography, artwork was the sole means of visual documentation. Thus the illustrations depict housing, landscapes, people, customs, artefacts, clothing, canoes . . . and new species of birds, fish and plants. An illustrated introduction outlines the historical background and the significant contribution of the French scientists to knowledge of the Great Ocean.
Was NZ$80.00 + Delivery
Now NZ$50.00 + Delivery
James Cook led three famous expeditions to the Pacific Ocean between 1768 and 1779. In voyages that ranged from the Antarctic circle to the Arctic Sea, Cook charted Australia and the whole coast of New Zealand, and brought back detailed descriptions of the natural history of the Pacific.
Accounts based on Cook's journals were issued at the time, but it was not until this century that the original journals were published.
JAMES COOK. THE JOURNALS tells the story of these voyages as Cook wanted it to be told, radiating the ambition, courage and skill which enabled him to carry out an unrivalled series of expeditions in dangerous waters.
NZ$32.00 + Delivery
APHRODITE'S ISLAND The European Discovery of Tahiti
By Anne Salmond. 155mm x 230mm Paperback. 537 pages. Coloured Images. Published 2009
Aphrodite's Island is a bold new account of the European discovery of Tahiti, the Pacific island of mythic status that has figured so powerfully in European imaginings about sexuality, the exotic, and the nobility or bestiality of “savages.”
In this groundbreaking book, Anne Salmond takes readers to the center of the shared history to furnish rich insights into Tahitian perceptions of the visitors while illuminating the full extent of European fascination with Tahiti. As she discerns the impact and meaning of the European effect on the islands, she demonstrates how, during the early contact period, the mythologies of Europe and Tahiti intersected and became entwined. Drawing on Tahitian oral histories, European manuscripts and artworks, collections of Tahitian artifacts, and illustrated with contemporary sketches, paintings, and engravings from the voyages, Aphrodite's Island provides a vivid account of the Europeans' Tahitian adventures. At the same time, the book's compelling insights into Tahitian life significantly change the way we view the history of this small island during a period when it became a crossroads for Europe.
NZ$55.00 + Delivery
This vivid book retells the story of Captain Cook's great voyages in the South Seas, focusing on the encounters between the explorers and the island peoples they "discovered." While Cook and his men were initially confounded by the Polynesians, they were also curious. Cook and his crew soon formed friendships-and often more intimate relationships-with the islanders. The islanders, who initially were not certain if the Englishmen were even human, came to experiment with Western customs and in some cases joined the voyagers on their expeditions. But familiarity quickly bred contempt. Shipboard discipline was threatened by these new relationships, and the culture of the islands was also changed forever. Captain Cook, initially determined to act as an enlightened leader, saw his resolve falter during the third voyage. Amicable relations turned hostile, culminating in Cook's violent death on the shores of Hawaii.
In this masterful account of Cook's voyages, Anne Salmond-a preeminent authority on the history of the south seas-reimagines two worlds that collided in the eighteenth century, and the enduring impact of that collision.
NZ$55.00 + Delivery
Norfolk Island isolation, savagery, mystery and murder.
Aren t remote South Pacific islands supposed to be paradise? Perhaps, from a distance, Norfolk Island looks a peaceful place lush with tall pines. But look closer and that idyllic facade is shattered.
For all of the 220 years we have known it, Norfolk's story has been one of darkness, pain, rage and horror. Long-buried bones and axes hint at the violence before Captain Cook arrived and claimed the place for England. And then the horror truly began. From its earliest days, the isolation of life on this rocky outcrop took its toll.
Author Robert Macklin, tells the vivid, bewitching story of how a unique lifestyle and culture evolved amongst the almost two thousand inhabitants. From a brutal penal colony, a refuge for descendants of the Bounty mutineers when they outgrew Pitcairn Island in 1856, to the murder of Janelle Patton in 2002, Norfolk Island is exposed like never before. A place full of shadows and wrongful deaths, its history is a mesmerising tale all the more powerful because it is true.
NZ$32.00 + Delivery
The incredible voyage of a shipload of "disorderly girls" and the men who transported them, fell for them, and sold them.
This riveting work of rediscovered history tells for the first time the plight of the female convicts aboard the Lady Julian, which set sail from England in 1789 and arrived in Australia's Botany Bay a year later. The women, most of them petty criminals, were destined for New South Wales to provide its hordes of lonely men with sexual favors as well as progeny. But the story of their voyage is even more incredible, and here it is expertly told by a historian with roots in the boatbuilding business and a true love of the sea.
Siân Rees delved into court documents and firsthand accounts to extract the stories of these women's experiences on board a ship that both held them prisoner and offered them refuge from their oppressive existence in London. At the heart of the story is the passionate relationship between Sarah Whitelam, a convict, and the ship's steward, John Nicol, whose personal journals provided much of the material for this book. Along the way, Rees brings the vibrant, bawdy world of London -- and the sights, smells, and sounds of an eighteenth-century ship -- vividly to life. In the tradition of Nathaniel Philbrick's In the Heart of the Sea, this is a winning combination of dramatic high seas adventure and untold history.
NZ$32.00 + Delivery
A magical, substantially true narrative of piracy, zoology, anthropology, danger and adventure in the seventeenth-century Caribbean, Pacific and East Indies.
The first great English-language travel book, A New Voyage Round the World (1697) is an incomparably vivid, chaotic and fascinating account by the pirate, explorer and naturalist William Dampier of his many adventures.
The world he describes sprawls all the way from the Caribbean west across the Pacific to the Philippines and Southeast Asia -
a vast expanse tied together by the Spanish Empire. Dampier and his men live lives of rascally precariousness,
in the shadow of great Spanish galleons and fortresses, always on the verge of disaster.
His book is filled with raids, escapes, wrecks and storms, but Dampier is also a great observer of animals, exotic foods, boats, customs: the book is a cornucopia of descriptions of everything from giant centipedes to bananas. It was originally designed simply to entertain and inform, but it is now a unique document, miraculously preserving glimpses of now long-vanished peoples and places.
NZ$32.00 + Delivery
How Dutch sailors found Australia and an English Pirate almost beat Captain Cook..
For many, the colonial story of Australia starts with Captain Cook's discovery of the east coast in 1770, but it was some 164 years before his historic voyage that European mariners began their romance with the immensity of the Australian continent. Between 1606 and 1688, while the British had their hands full with the Gunpowder Plot and the English Civil War, it was highly skilled Dutch seafarers who, by design, chance or shipwreck, discovered and mapped the majority of the vast, unknown waters and land masses in the Indian and Southern Oceans.
This is the setting that sees Rob Mundle back on the water with another sweeping and powerful account of Australian maritime history. It is the story of 17th-century European mariners - sailors, adventurers and explorers - who became transfixed by the idea of the existence of a Great South Land: 'Terra Australis Incognita'.
Rob takes you aboard the tiny ship, Duyfken, in 1606 when Dutch navigator and explorer, Willem Janszoon, and his 20-man crew became the first Europeans to discover Australia on the coast of the Gulf of Carpentaria. In the decades that followed, more Dutch mariners, like Hartog, Tasman, and Janszoon (for a second time), discovered and mapped the majority of the coast of what would become Australia. Yet, incredibly, the Dutch made no effort to lay claim to it, or establish any settlements. This process began with British explorer and former pirate William Dampier on the west coast in 1688, and by the time Captain Cook arrived in 1770, all that was to be done was chart the east coast and claim what the Dutch had discovered.
NZ$30.00 + Delivery
It has an astonishing recent past, an uncertain present and a hugely important future. The ocean and its peoples are the new lifeblood, fizz and thrill of America - which draws so many of its minds and so much of its manners from the sea - while the inexorable rise of the ancient center of the world, China, is a fixating fascination. The presence of rogue states - North Korea most notoriously today - suggest that the focus of the responsible world is shifting away from the conventional post-war obsessions with Europe and the Middle East, and towards a new set of urgencies.
Navigating the newly evolving patterns of commerce and trade, the world's most violent weather and the fascinating histories, problems and potentials of the many Pacific states, Simon Winchester's thrilling journey is a grand depiction of the future ocean.
NZ$28.00 + Delivery
A monumental, wholly accessible work of scholarship that retells human history through the story of mankind's relationship with the sea. An accomplishment of both great sweep and illuminating detail, The Sea and Civilization is a stunning work of history that reveals in breathtaking depth how people first came into contact with one another by ocean and river, and how goods, languages, religions, and entire cultures spread across and along the world's waterways.
Lincoln Paine takes us back to the origins of long-distance migration by sea with our ancestors' first forays from Africa and Eurasia to Australia and the Americas. He demonstrates the critical role of maritime trade to the civilizations of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, and the Indus Valley. He reacquaints us with the great seafaring cultures of antiquity like those of the Phoenicians and Greeks, as well as those of India, Southeast and East Asia who parlayed their navigational skills, shipbuilding techniques, and commercial acumen to establish vibrant overseas colonies and trade routes in the centuries leading up to the age of European overseas expansion. His narrative traces subsequent developments in commercial and naval shipping through the post-Cold War era. Above all, Paine makes clear how the rise and fall of civilizations can be traced to the sea.
NZ$45.00 + Delivery
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A ripping story that starts on the sea, aboard a clipper ship charging across the Southern Ocean, laden with passengers heading for Melbourne in response to the lure of gold. Brimming with countless stories of the magnificent ships and fearless (and feckless) characters we find on them, like Englishman "Bully" Forbes and American "Bully" Waterman driving their ships to the limit and the tragic legacy of the many shipwrecks that were so much a part of this era.
NZ$38.00 + Delivery.
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