War of the Whales

A True Story

War of the Whales

Winner of the 2015 PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award: “Horwitz’s dogged reporting…combined with crisp, cinematic writing, produces a powerful narrative…. He has written a book that is instructive and passionate and deserving a wide audience” (PEN Award Citation).

War of the Whales is the gripping tale of a crusading attorney who stumbles on one of the US Navy’s best-kept secrets: a submarine detection system that floods entire ocean basins with high-intensity sound—and drives whales onto beaches. As Joel Reynolds launches a legal fight to expose and challenge the Navy program, marine biologist Ken Balcomb witnesses a mysterious mass stranding of whales near his research station in the Bahamas. Investigating this calamity, Balcomb is forced to choose between his conscience and an oath of secrecy he swore to the Navy in his youth.

When Balcomb and Reynolds team up to expose the truth behind an epidemic of mass strandings, the stage is set for an epic battle that pits admirals against activists, rogue submarines against weaponized dolphins, and national security against the need to safeguard the ocean environment. Waged in secret military labs and the nation’s highest court, War of the Whales is a real-life thriller that combines the best of legal drama, natural history, and military intrigue.
  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 448 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451645019 | 
  • July 2014

Video

War of the Whales

Josh Horwitz describes how two civilian men took on the United States Navy to protect the fate of the most majestic creatures of the oceans.

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Articles About This Book

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Posted on Off the Shelf

Posted by Sarah Jane Abbott

Beneath the waves is a place of wonder, filled with creatures that are as beautiful as they are strange. But while the ocean covers almost seventy percent of the Earth’s surface, we know remarkably little about it. Scientists estimate that there...

About the Author

Joshua Horwitz
Carolyn Millstein

Joshua Horwitz

Joshua Horwitz is the cofounder and publisher of Living Planet Books in Washington, DC, which specializes in books by thought leaders in science, medicine, and psychology.

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