I was mesmerized by the documentary My Octopus Teacher, but after poring through this gorgeous not-quite-companion book, I realize now that was just the beginning. Underwater Wild is a heart-stopping collaboration, as Foster introduces Frylinck to the therapeutic wonders of skin diving in the kelp forests off South Africa and among the animals within it. Full of vibrant images, accompanying nature writing, the healing narrative journey of these two men, and the octopus teacher herself, this book is a gift we all deserve.
From the creators of the Academy Award-winning documentary My Octopus Teacher, an immersive journey into the underwater world that inspired it—and holds transformative lessons for us all
Craig Foster and Ross Frylinck regularly dive together in the awe-inspiring kelp forests off South Africa, without wetsuits or oxygen tanks. Craig had dived this way for years, including alongside the octopus that inspired My Octopus Teacher. In Ross, he found a kindred spirit, someone who also embraced the ancient methods of acclimating his body to frigid waters, but whose eyes had not yet adjusted to the transcendent wonder Craig saw each time they dove. In the heart-wrenching stories that make up this unforgettable book, we swim alongside Ross as he grows from skeptic to student of the underwater wild. And in the revelatory marine science behind the stunning photos, we learn how to track sea hares, cuttlefish, and limpets, and we witness strange new behaviors never before documented in marine biology. We realize that a whole world of wonder, and an innate wildness within us all, emerge anew when we simply observe.
My Octopus Teacher has captivated millions who long to connect with the natural world. Now, with Underwater Wild, the divers behind the film reveal a new vision of the sea, one full of wonder, new insights into marine biology, and life-changing teachings for even the most land-bound of us.
About the Author
CRAIG FOSTER is one of the world’s leading natural history filmmakers and co-founder of the Sea Change Project. His film My Octopus Teacher follows the story of his year with a wild octopus, at the same time honoring his pact to dive every day for a year. Through this regular intensive immersion, he has uncovered a plethora of new animal behaviors and species, one of which is a shrimp that has been named after him: Heteromysis Fosteri.
ROSS FRYLINCK is a co-founder of the Sea Change Project. He is also a co-founder of Autonomy, the international exhibition for sustainable mobility based in Paris. Ross is a writer and photographer, and a former commissioning editor at Cambridge University Press. He has been working for ocean conservation for the past 15 years and lives in Cape Town.
"Divers Foster and Frylinck bring the waters that inspired Foster’s Netflix documentary My Octopus Teacher to the page in this fascinating tour of the Great African Sea Forest near Cape Town...Foster and Frylinck’s affectingly personal and delicate storytelling will sit deep with naturalists of the ocean and land alike." —Publishers Weekly "An intriguing nature memoir packed with beautiful photos...a captivating call to take time to observe and live in the moment." —Kirkus "This is a truly extraordinary glimpse into a realm few would otherwise see." —Booklist, STARRED review