Rosaleen Love
276 pages, 6 x 9, 2001.

Located off Australia’s eastern coast, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the wonders of the natural world. The diversity of life is simply incredible. It is also the ideal environment for coral, making it a diver’s paradise. Indeed, some 200 million tourists visit the reef each year. Looking beyond the sheer beauty of this place, we learn, too, that it is a region rich in history, the setting for fateful shipwrecks and exotic Aboriginal myths. Australian writer Rosaleen Love explores the reef from all these angles, allowing us to see this stunning geography anew.

Part travelogue, part eco-history, Reefscape represents multiple views of the reef – through the eyes of mariners, pearl divers, naturalists, filmmakers, pirates, industrialists, and tourists alike- painting a fascinating portrait of a unique locale.

Told in a reflectively poetic voice, Love writes evocatively of the ecological, and geological significance of the reef. Woven throughout is the intriguing history of the area. This twofold approach provides a rich perspective on the reef an ecosystem as well as a natural resource for its inhabitants. By recounting both tales, Reefscape provides a window on the past and foreshadows the future of this extraordinary environment.

Reefscape will illuminate the meaning of the human encounter with nature. It will inspire delight in the imagination and spirit of all who yearn for the transcendence of turquoise waters.

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