Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Ocean Book by Frank Sherwin

book cover

The Ocean Book
by Frank Sherwin

ISBN-13: 9780890514016
Hardback: 80 pages
Publisher: Master Books
Released: April 2004

Source: Bought from a local Christian bookstore.

Book Description from Back Cover:
The oceans may well be Earth’s final frontier. These dark and sometimes mysterious waters cover 71 percent of the surface area of the globe and have yet to be fully explored. Under the waves, a watery world of frail splendor, foreboding creatures, and sights beyond imagination awaits.

The Ocean Book will teach you about:
  • Giant squid and other “monsters” of the seas
  • Centuries of ocean exploration
  • Hydrothermal vents
  • The ingredients that make up the ocean
  • Harnessing the ocean’s energy
  • Icebergs
  • Coral reefs
  • Ships, submarines, and other ocean vessels
  • The major ocean currents
  • El Niño, whirlpools, and hurricanes
  • Harvesting the oceans’ resources
  • Whales, dolphins, fish, and other sea creatures
Learning about the oceans and their hidden contents can be exciting and rewarding. The abundance and diversity of life, the wealth of resources, and the simple mysteries there have intrigued explorers and scientist for centuries. A better understanding of our oceans ensures careful conservation of their grandeur and beauty for future generations, and leads to a deeper respect for the delicate balance of life on planet Earth.

My Review:
The Ocean Book gives a good, basic overview of the many aspects of the ocean (from its physical characteristics to sea life) from a Christian perspective. The author referred to God as the Creator of the oceans and occasionally referred to the world-wide Flood described in Genesis. The book was well-written and easy to understand for about ages 9 on up. It contained many lovely, full-color photographs of sea-related animals and objects as well as useful color illustrations.

The introduction gave some fascinating facts about the ocean. Chapter One gave an overview of the history of studying of the ocean (including when, how, and what studied). Chapter Two talked about the physical characteristics of the ocean (shore, coast, continental margin, trenches, ridges, hydrothermal vents). Chapter Three talked about the chemical make-up of the ocean (also discussing salt & icebergs). Chapter Four discussed how tides, waves, currents, and whirlpools are formed. Chapter Five talked about El Niño, La Niña, and hurricanes.

Chapter Six talked about the fishing and (sea) mining industry and tidal hydropower. Chapter Seven discussed marine life (zones, plankton, algae, crustaceans, mollusks, fish, whales, and ocean monsters). Chapter Eight discussed coral reefs (animals & vegetation, types, how formed). Chapter Nine talked about ocean-going vessels (research ships, submarines & submersibles, how steel ships float, how submarines control their depth, and early ocean navigation). Chapter Ten discussed the Genesis flood (what the ark looked like, how fish survived, etc.). The Appendix had a glossary, short biographies for five ocean-crossing explorers, and length conversion charts. There was also a pull-out poster with some illustrations and pictures from the book.

Overall, I'd recommend this enjoyable book to any (Christian) child who's interested in learning more about the ocean.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt from Introduction
The oceans can be thought of as protective, like a blanket that Almighty God has cast over the surface of the earth. Along with the atmosphere, the oceans help to regulate the climate and weather of the world. Because water is so effective in absorbing heat, the oceans act as heat reservoirs that moderate the cold of winter and the heat of summer.

The oceans are also provisional, directly providing food for sustenance and life-giving oxygen released from tiny, free-floating photosynthetic organisms. Most people know that plants supply the atmosphere with oxygen: what they do not know is that plants contribute only half of the oxygen. Those tiny ocean organisms produce the other half. Indirectly, the oceans provide precipitation by acting as the source of rain for crops. Heavy ocean breakers, tides, and currents also reveal that our oceans are powerful, a source of almost limitless energy for man's potential use.

Human history is closely connected to the oceans. Centuries ago, the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas, and the Indian, Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic Oceans were referred to by some as the "seven seas" or those bodies of water that were navigable. As exploration continued through the decades, oceanographers saw the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea as marginal seas of the Atlantic Ocean. They also distinguished the Antarctic Ocean from those oceans to its north. Today these vast bodies of water serve as a great liquid highway for commercial ships, act as borders between nations, supply one-third of usable natural gas and petroleum, and provide a major source of a variety of foods and recreation. God's creative hand is clearly seen in preparing this planet with its life-supporting oceans for our habitation.

The oceans contain the greatest number of living things on Earth. Many of the most amazing creatures in God's creation reside in the salty deep. Incredibly beautiful life forms inhabit the sparkling, sunlit waters of areas such as Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

Here's an excerpt with the pictures shown as well.

No comments: