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Deep Descent


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About the Author

Kevin F. McMurray is an award-winning journalist and photographer whose work has appeared in such prestigious newspapers and magazines as The New York Times, New York magazine, Outside, Yankee, Men's Journal, The Sunday Times, Rock & Ice, Cigar Aficionado and many others.


McMurray's is an earnest journal of deep-sea wreck diving, mostly over the Italian passenger liner Andrea Doria, which sank in a collision off Cape Cod in 1956. The Doria still draws extreme scuba divers 235 feet down to "the Everest of scuba," where, over the last 20 years, 12 divers have met their deaths. After a Night to Remember-style introduction to the ship's history, the author turns his talents as a journalist and diver (he has reached and explored the Doria hulk several times) to question why inverse mountaineers still come back to the wreck. McMurray renders a shared obsession, mostly through fuzzy sketches of expeditions to the wreck in the 1980s and '90s, and follows a dozen divers down to the Doria. Yet his descriptions are uninspiring; even the accounts of fatal dives are flat (despite a multiple-photo series of a body being hauled to the dive boat). His we-band-of-brother-divers tone can't substitute for description or character; indeed, it proves an obstacle to thoughtful storytelling. McMurray the scuba diver never quite admits to McMurray the journalist-observer that divers visit the Andrea Doria because of not in spite of the risks. 75 b&w photos. (June) Forecast: Despite the current public fascination with dangerous sport, this book won't appeal to the uninitiated. McMurray could become a sort of Sebastian Junger-esque celebrity he holds a world record for swimming around the island of Manhattan except that his book can't compare with The Perfect Storm. It is for fellow scuba samurai only. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Clive Cussler A compelling masterwork of the greatest shipwreck killer in maritime history. McMurray involves you in the life-and-death drama as if you are actually diving in the depths.
Library Journal Exciting and powerful.
The Philadelphia Inquirer This is a book you will have a hard time putting down. Page after page leads you through adventure, mystery, suspense, and acts of heroism.
Kirkus Reviews McMurray knows his stuff...Compelling...Full of high drama in low places.

Sunk in 1956, the Andrea Doria lies 235 feet below the wavesAin the Bermuda Triangle, no less. Here, journalist and scuba diver McMurray recounts efforts to explore the ruined hulk, a difficult feat that sometimes leads to death. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

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