Simon’s ATLANTIC now in paperback

Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms,and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories was published in hardback by HarperCollins, London, October 11th 2010, and by HarperCollins, New York, November 2nd 2011. Paperback editions came out in London in July 2011 and in the US on 5th November 2011.

The book was delivered to the publisher on January 14. Now comes the long process of editing, designing, the choosing of illustrations and maps and the design of the jacket - all of which I will endeavor to tell you about as the weeks ago by.


Here are some Audio Postcards sent to PRI's The World

Simon Winchester's Atlantic World

Seal colony on Namibia's Skeleton Coast
April 6th, 2009

Simon Winchester's latest postcard reached us from a perilous stretch of coastline in southern Africa. Cold offshore ocean currents produce dense fog, and a harsh and steady wind drives the surf. That makes going ashore here next to impossible Over the centuries, more than a thousand ships have tried, only to end up smashed on the rocks.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

South Georgia mountains
March 12th, 2009In March Simon Winchester sent an audio postcard from the Sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia, where he follows in the footsteps of explorer Ernest Shackleton in 1916. Shackleton's ship, The Endurance, had sunk, and with two of his crew, Shackleton rowed and sailed for three weeks in a small open boat, and then walked across the glaciers to the whaling station on South Georgia. His first sight of the station, when he knew that at last he and his men would be safe, was a momentous occasion, and Simon Winchester tells us more from the very spot where Shackleton first saw the station:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

March 5th, 2009Anchor Lisa Mullins speaks with Simon Winchester about the Falkland Islands. Winchester visited the British territory 27 years after the United Kingdom and Argentina fought a war over these islands in the South Atlantic. He reflects on the what life is like on this remote Atlantic outpost then (1982) and now.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

March 2nd, 2009
This time Winchester sends us an audio postcard from an island that inspired Shakespeare.

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February 2nd, 2009The Purple Islands (or Iles Purpuraires) played a big role in the history of the Atlantic Ocean dating back as far as the ancient Phoenician civilization. Simon Winchester explains all in an audio postcard that's postmarked the Purple Islands:

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  • helengiss

    Dear Simon, I know this is short notice, but I am reviewing your book "The Man Who Loved China" at my book club on Wednesday the 3rd. We met in Hong Kong at the American Club in Tai Tam and were guest's of Deborah O'Hara. If you have time it would be great to hear from you regarding this particular book. Thanks, Helen Giss

  • Phil Wesler

    Dear Mr. Winchester,

    I have enjoyed reading some of your books. I'm working on two of them now, but I came across what I consider an error, in "The Meaning of Everything". You say that Noah Webster came from New Hartford, Ct. That's about 16 miles from where he was really born, in West Hartford. I know, since I've visited his home, and lived about 2 miles away for 35 years.

    Sincerely, Phil Wesler

    P.S. The other one is "Krakatoa", and I haven't found any errors in it yet, but I'm still looking!

  • Lisa

    Dear Mr. Winchester,

    The publication date is already on my calendar. It was a nice surprise to find the book annoucement on the internet today.

    I wonder if there is a chapter on the Azores? I hope so . . . I sent you an e-mail some time ago asking if you would ever publish a book on that part of the world and it's wonderful geology.

    May I ask if the audio CD version will be published similtaneously and whether you will do the reading yourself?

    Kind regards,


  • Benedicte du Cheyron Monroe

    Hi Mr. Winchester
    I just finished reading "the man who loved China" and enjoyed it immensely. Would you authorize me to translate it in French? I have done translations on economic and political subjects, and I have some free time now.
    Best regards

  • Ruth Graves

    I was not happy about your attitude in "Krakatoa" towards the relative contributions of Wallace vs. Darwin. Darwin had pondered and worked out the ideas of "The Origin..." for years and only rushed to publication to "beat" Wallace because his friends and family felt he deserved credit for an idea that had been gestating in his mind (supported by activities and publications) for years. An important reason for his hesitancy was his affection and respect for his wife's religious beliefs. Simply to put this down as procrastination is unfair.

  • nigel

    Reviewed by JASON STEGER, last night, on the first tuesday book club in Australia. Can't wait!

  • Leealkire

    Dear Simon,
    As a participant on the Corinthian II voyage through the distant islands in '09 with you, your wife, and so many astonishing people, I found that your evocative recorded description of the Shackleton trek on South Georgia Island brought back vivid memories of that astonsishing place. It is a part of the world that continues to draw one magnetically. Thank you for all your all your good stories, both jolly and daunting. Also, what no one on the Corinthian knew was that on the first day out and in jet lag, I had fallen down a ship's ladder and severely injured my leg (think another knee cap in the swelling). Had I revealed the true nature of this they probably would have ruled out my participation in the hike to Stromness. It was my small dose of "endurance" and, in retrospect, gave greater meaning to the hike. Finally, lots of people here in Spokane are waiting for the release of your new book.

    Best Wishes,

    Lee Alkire

  • Gordon Brearley

    I would like to se an "Email this to a friend" button on this flyer.
    Gordon D. Brearley

  • Lapoole2

    Dear Simon, I have listened to all your other books.Are you planning on releasing an audiobook version of Atlantic?

  • Simon

    There is an audio book, and which I narrated.

  • Gail Reid

    Please tell Simon Winchester that I traveled from New York to Le Harve during the winter of 1966 on the Queen Anna Maria. As I began the preface of his new book I had the uncanny feeling I knew exactly how he felt. Imagine my surprise when I read in the footnote that the Empress had become the Queen Anna Maria. I sat with tears in my eyes. His writing brought it all back.

    Gail Reid, Petaluma, Ca

  • Shaun

    Mr. Winchester,

    I just finished the first part of this book, where the discovery of the New World is discussed. At the end of the section there is a brief discussion on why it is unlikely that natives of the North and South American continents likely did not cross the Atlantic to Europe and Africa.

    Why was there no discussion of the possibilities that Africans shot across the Atlantic toward the "undiscovered" lands? Is there no evidence of such? Or are there no mythologies in South American lore of mysterious black figures arriving on their shores? Or are there no myths in Nigeria or along West Coast Africa that one of their people set across that vast sea? Are there no African equivalents of "Vinland" legends?

    Further, there was a decided lack of discussion of Africans exploring their coastlines. Is this because they did NOT explore their own continent? Or because there is no evidence of such? Or is the research limited due to language and/or other barriers? I would find it difficult to believe that Africans weren't sailing around their own continent and exploring "their" Atlantic Ocean, but maybe I'm wrong.

    These are points of curiosity that will weigh on me as I dive into the subsequent sections of your book. I hope you can point me to some research or answers to any of the above.

    Much obliged,
    Shaun Randol

  • Pet A.niblock

    Dear Simon; I am just now three-quarters through Krakatoa and felt I should add my Vancouver experience of the Mt. St. Helen's explosion. I am an Anglican priest having majored in Maths & Physics at the University of Toronato and now 18 years retired. But on that auspicious day I was between services and was just crossing over the centre aisle of our church in front of the chancel whenat the same moment I heard the explosion and felt the floor under my feet lift. I of course thought a ship had blown up in the Fraser River a few miles south only later to learn what had actually transpired. In the nine years since Krakatoa was published you have probably had many memos like this and possibly from Vancouver who also confirm that the explosion was heard even here. You have given us in Krakatoa a remarkable piece of writing for which I send your way my sincer thanks. My father, who was born in 1902, and grew up in Calgary, told me more than once about the magnificent sunsets he was wirness too as the sun dipped behind the nearby Rocky Mountains.  Sincerely,   Peter A. Niblock

  • Haleypies

    hello simon, my name is haley, i am 15 and writing a book report on your book the profeesor and the madman.  just wanted to thank you for the great book!

  • Howard Crise

    Re: Boats in New York harbor (Bridgewater Art Museum), inside front cover

    Names of boats and date of photo?