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NESS Summer Reading List

Looking for a good beach read?

Dive deep and take a peek at these books recommended by NESS staff!

For Adults

The Starboard Sea, Amber Dermont: Classic story of friendship, love, and nature set against a Gossip Girl-esque background reminding us why those who feel lost most often find their way at sea.

The Sea Around Us, Rachel Carson: We are all connected through the ocean, discover how humans are affecting the health of the sea through

The Heart of the Sea, Nathaniel Philbrick: Based on the historical event that inspired the Moby Dick saga, recounts the story of an American whaling ship lost at sea

Swimming to Antarctica: Tales of a Long-Distance Swimmer, Lynn Cox: World-renowned long distance swimmer, Lynn Cox, shares her experience of swimming in the waters of Antarctica

Dune, Frank Herbert: Set on a planet that is inhospitable to life, we realize the importance of water, taking a sci-fi approach to ecology and written during the start of the environmentalist movement

Spirals in Time (The Secret Life and Curious Afterlife of Seashells), Helen Scales: Learn about the underwater world of seashells and mollusks, from their purpose in mathematics to being used as currency, and what the current state of our oceans means for these creatures

The Soul of an Octopus, Sy Montgomery: Take a dive into the incredibly intelligent brain of an octopus, as author, Sy Montgomery, shares stories of her friendship with 8- armed Athena

Old Man and the Sea, Earnest Hemingway: A classic sea tale and one of Hemingway’s most famous works follows the story of an old fisherman in Cuba and his battle with a big marlin

Blue Mind, Wallace J. Nichols: It seems like every time we turn around we’re hit with a new health trend, but did you know that a visit to the ocean might be what you need? Find out how being near water can improve performance, mood, and increase professional success

A Drop in the Ocean, Jenni Ogden: Looking for some fiction? Neuroscientist finds herself lost and books a year-long trip to the Great Barrier Reef which is teeming with green turtles. On her trip, she will learn about love, second chances, and about herself

For Children

Deep-Water Man, Burt Dow: Burt Dow, a resident New Englander, and his pet gull set out to sea and must survive a raging storm

All the Way to the Ocean, Joel Harper: Just one wrapper and plastic bottle can make a huge impact if it makes it into the ocean…find out how with James and Isaac as they learn about storm drain pollution

Snail on a Whale, Julia Donaldson: What kinds of adventures can a tiny snail and a huge humpback whale have together? Read and find out

Circus Ship, Chris Van Dusen: A story about friendship and community based on a historic event when a circus ship runs aground off the coast of Maine

Pesky Plastic, Leticia Colon de Mejias: Learn about how plastic impacts our planet and what you can do to make a difference in the future of our oceans

The Legend of Objee, Joanna Meyers: With the U.S. Coast Guard Academy so close to NESS, why not learn a little bit about the Coast Guard’s pet bear, Objee, a real life legend!

The Eastwind Penguin, Joanna Meyers: Want more books about the Coast Guard? This brave baby penguin joins the crew of the icebreaker, Eastwind. What kind of adventures do you think he will have?

A House of Hermit Crab, Eric Carle: One of NESS’s favorite books, Eric Carle brings the underwater world to life following a year in the life of a hermit crab as he makes friends and decorates his home

Ocean Meets Sky, Terry Fan and Eric Fan: A young boy sets sail in the sky, take flight in this magical journey underwater above the clouds

Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist: We love women in STEM! Learn more about how Eugenie Clark’s curiosity led her to a lifelong career in marine biology

Very Last First Time, Jan Andrews: Explore Inuit tradition with Eva as she learns to gather mussels for the first time

The Brilliant Deep: Rebuilding the World’s Coral Reefs, Kate Messner: Awareness around coral reefs seems all over the place! Find out why these ecosystems are so important and about some creative ways to restore the reef