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Download Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II Audiobook, by Robert Kurson Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (7,709 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert Kurson Narrator: Michael Prichard Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2004 ISBN: 9781415904770
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In the tradition of Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air and Sebastian Junger’s The Perfect Storm comes a true tale of riveting adventure in which two weekend scuba divers risk everything to solve a great historical mystery—and make history themselves.

For John Chatterton and Richie Kohler, deep wreck diving was more than a sport. Testing themselves against treacherous currents, braving depths that induced hallucinatory effects, navigating through wreckage as perilous as a minefield, they pushed themselves to their limits and beyond, brushing against death more than once in the rusting hulks of sunken ships.

But in the fall of 1991, not even these courageous divers were prepared for what they found 230 feet below the surface, in the frigid Atlantic waters sixty miles off the coast of New Jersey: a World War II German U-boat, its ruined interior a macabre wasteland of twisted metal, tangled wires, and human bones—all buried under decades of accumulated sediment.

No identifying marks were visible on the submarine or the few artifacts brought to the surface. No historian, expert, or government had a clue as to which U-boat the men had found. In fact, the official records all agreed that there simply could not be a sunken U-boat and crew at that location.

Over the next six years, an elite team of divers embarked on a quest to solve the mystery. Some of them would not live to see its end. Chatterton and Kohler, at first bitter rivals, would be drawn into a friendship that deepened to an almost mystical sense of brotherhood with each other and with the drowned U-boat sailors—former enemies of their country. As the men’s marriages frayed under the pressure of a shared obsession, their dives grew more daring, and each realized that he was hunting more than the identities of a lost U-boat and its nameless crew.

Author Robert Kurson’s account of this quest is at once thrilling and emotionally complex, and it is written with a vivid sense of what divers actually experience when they meet the dangers of the ocean’s underworld. The story of Shadow Divers often seems too amazing to be true, but it all happened, 230 feet down, in the deep blue sea.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An engrossing saga of the suspenseful, intriguing, and dangerous underwater investigation of a Mystery U-boat.”

    Clive Cussler

  • “Robert Kurson’s Shadow Divers, about the divers exploring a sunken shipwreck off the New Jersey coast, is a gripping account of real-life adventurers and a real-life mystery…The book offers a unique window on the deep, almost reckless nature of the human quest to know.”

    Scott Turow, New York Times bestselling author of Reversible Errors

  • “Written with great you-are-there intensity and dynamic verve.”

    New York Times

  • “A tremendously suspenseful story of discovery that comes as close as any book could to providing the reader with approximate sensations of deep sea diving and of life on a submarine at war, and that leaves us with a hell of an impression of the grit, guts, and compassion of a U-boat crew and the two American divers who risked everything to solve the mystery of their last mission.”

    John McCain, author of Faith of My Fathers and Why Courage Matters

  • “Robert Kurson’s status as an undiscovered pleasure…is about to change, I suspect, in a hurry. Shadow Divers is so culturally astute and terrifyingly suspenseful that it should reach the sort of audience John Berendt, Susan Orlean, Jon Krakauer, and Laura Hillenbrand have recently earned. Kurson’s new focus is the larger historical world—a world of U-Boats, forensics, and lung-crushing pressure—and his prose is, as always, plain gorgeous.”

    James McManus, author of Positively Fifth Street

  • “A winning tale exceedingly well told, Shadow Divers takes us on a dangerous and seemingly quixotic descent into the murk—and then, in a fog of nitrogen narcosis, brings us back to the surface with a richer, fuller fathoming of a history we only thought we knew.”

    Hampton Sides, author of Ghost Soldiers: The Epic Account of World War II’s Greatest Rescue Mission

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Winner of a 2005 YALSA Alex Award
  • Nominated for the Barnes & Noble Discover Award
  • A USA Today Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Miste | 2/10/2014

    " Fascinating account of the discovery of a sunken U-boat about 70 miles off the New Jersey coast. Detailed descriptions of what deepsea wreck diving is like (those guys are CRAZEEE!) From the bends to narcosis to running out of air the danger is amazing. These guys were driven to discover the identity of the U-Boat that had no record of being where it was. Very interesting book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Steve | 1/31/2014

    " I loved this book, too! I dive, so I found the whole science of diving to be fascinating. The characters were crisp and the story was awesome. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lori | 1/29/2014

    " Well-written, exciting -- I never looked ahead & loved every minute. This one's for you, Gary. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danny | 1/16/2014

    " History in this one about the German U-boats and the surprise and once in a life time find of a group of dedicated divers. Based on a true story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lou | 1/15/2014

    " Very exciting especially if you enjoy "soft" fiction writing. I fist read his "Crashing Through" and was not disappointed by this second read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Roberta | 1/15/2014

    " The true story of two men who discovered a German U-Boat and made it their life's work to identify its source. It was well interested and opened a whole new world of wreck diving with an interesting array of characters. The fact that it is true is awe inspiring. I like the way it treated the German side story with respect. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kendar88 | 1/13/2014

    " Fantastic! Totally got me hooked on submarines, WWII and SCUBA. Interesting characters and facinating adventures. All history books should be this entertaining. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Debra | 12/23/2013

    " I usually read fiction, don't know why I picked this one up, but it was absolutely fantastic. A German submarine just off the East Coast that no one knew was there. A real roller coaster ride. Really really great read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vanessa | 12/14/2013

    " Really interesting and educational (if you're at all interested in diving). The story is very exciting and well-written even though it's fictional. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gary Barrentine | 12/10/2013

    " It was very informative about the hazards of deep sea diving. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Luan | 11/15/2013

    " I feel bad. I wanted to give this book more stars. I even had Bob read it on vacation. The consensus was it was interesting, in fact, very interesting but not engaging. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Diane Sherman | 10/26/2013

    " Did not expect to like this book - it was great! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeffrey | 10/6/2013

    " What a great book. Sad and frustrating but one you cannot put down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Taueret | 9/15/2013

    " I enjoyed this a lot- if you like Jon Krakauer you'd probably enjoy this. Filled with danger, adventure, bromance, history- a good story well told. The audio adaptation I listened to was very good. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Noelle williams | 4/24/2013

    " I don't dive and I wont say it made me want to try. However, it was cool. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Meg Hall | 3/27/2013

    " Very interesting and a good and fast read "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sue Montgomery | 7/24/2012

    " lots of interesting facts about diving, wreck diving, and the UBoats of ww2 "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shifra | 3/12/2012

    " I throughly enjoyed listening to the true adventures of two wreck divers who found a Uboat outside of New Jersey. The narrative moves the story in a fictional kind of excitement. It was an exciting learning experience. I definitely recommend it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Magila | 2/15/2012

    " questionable choice in some vocabulary aside (i mean, the guys are practically sailors), this book is super entertaining. non-fiction that reads like fiction, but is non-fiction. if you care at all about diving, the world wars, mysters/thrillers, or just for a good time, check out this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bob Brothers | 12/5/2011

    " Only a couple of chapters in but this is a captivating story so far. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeanne | 4/20/2011

    " Shocked that I liked a book about diving for sunken shipwrecks, but this was absolutely fascinating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill | 4/19/2011

    " I felt like I got to know the divers. the description of the wreck divers was wonderful. I have recommended this to lots of my friends. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Susanne | 4/18/2011

    " Couldn't put this book down. Such an unbelievable story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Krista | 4/1/2011

    " Such an interesting tale of the dangers and amazing finds in deep sea diving. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jess | 3/28/2011

    " Outstanding account of the search for the identity of a sunken U-boat where one was not supposed to be. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kendar88 | 3/26/2011

    " Fantastic! Totally got me hooked on submarines, WWII and SCUBA. Interesting characters and facinating adventures. All history books should be this entertaining. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim | 3/25/2011

    " This book was awesome! I learned a lot about scuba diving and about WWII U-boats. I don't typically read a lot of non-fiction, but I couldn't put this one down! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rob | 3/16/2011

    " Great story, a real page turner. But the stars of the book are self-obsessed, and it gets a bit old "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katherine | 3/8/2011

    " One of my all time favorites. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katie | 3/7/2011

    " Really interesting book. A real-life modern adventure story filled with danger and mystery. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jolee | 3/2/2011

    " One of the most interesting stories I've read. Totally loved it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Al | 2/26/2011

    " This was a pretty interesting story and a good book for listening. Adventurers and WWII buffs would likely enjoy it the most. "

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About the Author
Robert Kurson earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Wisconsin, then a law degree from Harvard Law School. His award-winning stories have appeared in Rolling Stone, The New York Times Magazine, and Esquire, where he is a contributing editor. Crashing Through is based on Kurson’s 2006 National Magazine Award-winning profile in Esquire. He is the author of Shadow Divers, and he lives in Chicago. Visit the author’s website at www.robertkurson.com.
About the Narrator

Michael Prichard is a Los Angeles-based actor who has played several thousand characters during his career, over one hundred of them in theater and film. He is primarily heard as an audiobook narrator, having recorded well over five hundred full-length books. His numerous awards and accolades include an Audie Award for Tears in the Darkness by Michael Norman and Elizabeth M. Norman and six AudioFile Earphones Awards. He was named a Top Ten Golden Voice by SmartMoney magazine. He holds an MFA in theater from the University of Southern California.