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Download The Human, the Orchid, and the Octopus: Exploring and Conserving Our Natural World Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Human, the Orchid, and the Octopus: Exploring and Conserving Our Natural World, by Jacques Cousteau Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (121 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jacques Cousteau, Susan Schiefelbein Narrator: Stephen Hoye Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Part adventure story, part manifesto, this is legendary ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau’s passionate plea for sustaining life on earth.

Explorer, diving pioneer, filmmaker, inventor, and activist, Jacques Cousteau was blessed from his childhood with boundless curiosity about the natural world. As the leader of fascinating, often dangerous expeditions all over the planet, he discovered firsthand the complexity and beauty of life on earth and undersea—and watched the toll taken by human activity in the twentieth century.

In his magnificent last book, available for the first time in the United States, Cousteau describes his deeply informed philosophy about protecting our world for future generations. Weaving gripping stories of his adventures throughout, he and coauthor Susan Schiefelbein address the risks we take with human health, the overfishing and sacking of the world’s oceans, the hazards of nuclear proliferation, and the environmental responsibility of scientists, politicians, and people of faith. Written over the last ten years of his life with frequent collaborator Schiefelbein, who also introduces the text and provides an update on environmental developments in the decade since Cousteau’s death, this prescient, clear-sighted book is a remarkable testament to the life and work of one of our greatest modern adventurers.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Cousteau’s reverence for life’s miracles…shines through in this eloquent testimony on the importance of pursuing higher ideals.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “[An] electrifying, many-faceted masterwork.”


Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Caroline | 12/24/2012

    " Very good - depressing as all get out but an interesting read. It is a bit dry at points which made it hard to read but that's my only quibble. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Rebecca | 1/6/2012

    " Interesting anecdotes...a very intimidating look at pollution and destruction of sea life. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Hilary | 8/14/2011

    " Boring didn't finish "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by gabrielle | 3/13/2011

    " one time, my brother did a project on jacques cousteau, meaning i had to do a project on jacques cousteau (because i am only slightly more focused than he and my mom made me), but i didn't mind this one because jacques cousteau is really really cool. "

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About the Author

Jacques Cousteau (1910–1997) was world renowned as an ocean explorer, filmmaker, educator, and environmental activist. He won three Oscars and the Palme d’Or for his films; was nominated for forty Emmys during the run of his TV series, The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau; and wrote or coauthored more than seventy-five books, including The Silent World, which has sold 5 million copies in twenty-two languages. As director of the Oceanographic Institute of Monaco and a member of the advisory committee of the International Atomic Energy Agency, he was active in the conservation and anti-nuclear-proliferation movements.