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Deep Descent: Adventure and Death Diving the Andrea Doria: Adventure and Death: The Andrea Doria [Paperback]

Kevin F. McMurray
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
RRP: 16.99
Price: 13.88 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 July 2002
On a foggy July evening in 1956, the Italian cruise liner Andrea Doria, bound for New York, was struck broadside by another vessel. In eleven hours, she would sink nearly 250 feet to the murky Atlantic Ocean floor. Thanks to a daring rescue operation, only 51 of more than 1,700 people died in the tragedy. But the Andrea Doria is still taking lives. Considered the Mt. Everest of diving, the Andrea Doria is the ultimate deepwater wreck challenge. Over the years, a small but fanatical group of extreme scuba divers have investigated the Andrea Doria, pushing themselves to the very limits of human endurance to explore her -- and not all have returned. Diver Kevin McMurray takes you inside this elite club with a hard, honest look at those who go deeper, farther, and closer to the edge than others would ever dream. Deep Descent is the riveting true story of the human spirit overcoming human frailty and of fearsome, mortal risks traded for a hard-core adrenaline rush. Chronicling these adventures in his page-turning narrative and in dozens of dramatic photos, McMurray draws us deeper into the cold heart of the unforgiving sea, giving us a powerful vision of a place to which few will ever have the skills -- or the courage -- to go.

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Deep Descent: Adventure and Death Diving the Andrea Doria: Adventure and Death: The Andrea Doria + Blind Descent: The Quest to Discover the Deepest Place on Earth
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Product details

  • Paperback: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; Reprint edition (1 July 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743400631
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743400633
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 412,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description


"Kirkus Reviews" McMurray knows his stuff...Compelling...Full of high drama in low places.

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.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Wearing close to two-hundred pounds of scuba gear, Gary Gillian was anxious to make his ungainly entry into the rolling seas of the Atlantic. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating but morbid 29 May 2002
A book I genuinely read in a day. The Andrea Doria was the flagship passenger liner of the Italian fleet - I hate to say the Titanic of the Italian passenger liner business but that is the nearest cliche.
The book is on the face of it the history of deep sea diving of the wreck, which to quote another cliche is the 'Everest' of diving challenges - dangerously deep to you and me hence the title. The theme of the book is a history of the people who have dived the wreck and brought up various artefacts - mainly china, especially the people who have met a gruesome end in the process. Yes it is a history of death in the pursuit of the ultimate diving challenge and anyone who has entered the fantasy land of diving for hidden treasure who read this book will happily tear up their amature padi certficates.
The suspense of the history of the divers, exceptionally professional ones, who have met their end is truely gripping as the book drives home how easy one slight mistake has taken the life of such professionals. Usually for one reason - greed, but greed for that inanimate object that may elude them for another year or so. To compound the morbid nature of the book there is reproduced the waiver potential divers must sign with respect to their claim on any expedition leader is reproduced in full as an appendix!
An interesting aside to the book is that it details the dispute between the two principal boats who ferry hopeful divers (oassionally to the fate) to the site. Quite simply certain divers are loyal to one boat, they fall out and become loyal to another.
What the book lacks is depth in the history of the actual boat itself, but in its defence that is not what the book about.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Diving and Dying on the Doria. 24 Nov 2004
She was once the pride of an entire nation. She was a post WW2 Transatlantic Liner with the most beautiful lines that only Italy can produce. Launched in 1951 and completed in 1952, the Andrea Doria went into service in early 1953. She displaced 29,083 tons and measured 656*5 feet x 90*2 feet with a draught of 45*4 feet. There were 10 decks, 11 watertight compartments and accommodation for 1,241 passengers and 575 crew. She was powered by 2 turbine engines capable of generating 50,000 hp and fitted with 2 propellers both of which weighed 16 tons. She was completely fireproof and every last detail was one of supreme luxury. As the flagship of the entire Italian fleet, with her went the hopes and aspirations of her country as it emerged from the turmoil and confusion of those dark years of WW2.

On the evening of 25 July 1956 the Doria (as she will always be affectionately known) was approaching New York just as the Swedish Liner Stockholm was heading in the opposite direction. After a series of errors by the officer of the watch on board the Stockholm, it was almost midnight when the Andrea Doria was rammed by that ship which sliced deep into her starboard side. It was a mortal blow and, in a manner reminiscent of the loss of the Titanic, the point of impact could not have been in a worse place. As the Stockholm backed away a large deep gash was revealed through which the Atlantic Sea was already pouring. The Doria took on an immediate 30 degree list to starboard - a list which would slowly increase until she was finally lost. That inexorable process took over 11 hours and the Andrea Doria sank at 10:09 am 26 July 1956.

Today, the Andrea Doria will feature heavily on any scuba diver's list of top ten shipwrecks of the world.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read for Technical & Wreck Wannabes 13 Feb 2007
By Paul D
I enjoyed reading this book, and would recommend it to anyone who's diving interest is more than just shallow reefs and drift dives.

It is a snapshot of the early days of deep wreck diving and the dangers that go along with that pursuit. Written with the diver in mind, I can't see it being of much interest to a non-diver, but most certainly is to the diver who wants to 'push out the envelope'.

I found it interesting that my Tech instructor suggested this book to me when I enrolled for an Advanced Wreck Course with him. I think he wanted me to get an idea of what can happen inside a wreck and not have some sort of fairytale fantasy about penetrating wrecks.

Compelling and enlightening.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great read 9 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
loved this book from start to finish, was my first factual novel on Scuba diving and some aspects - caused good discussion at my local scuba club.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars holiday read 29 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book was so down to earth no punches pulled. Sad but exciting .my wife said it must be good for me to read it on holiday from ex diver
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Excellent read even though I noted some poor reviews before I purchased it. Its sobering rather than morbid and is more like an account of climbing Mount Everest in that it gives accounts of people at the limits of human achievement. Also recommend "The last dive" by Bernie Chowdhury.
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