Published: October 2015
From a New York Times bestselling author comes a breathtaking journey into the extraordinary world of dolphins. Since the dawn of history, humans have felt a kinship with dolphins, whose playfulness, sociability, and intelligence seem an aquatic mirror of humankind. But dolphins are mysterious- scientists still don't completely understand their sophisticated navigation and communication abilities, or their immensely complicated brains. In 2010, after her father's death, Susan Casey had a singular experience with a pod of spinner dolphins while swimming off the coast of Maui. It inspired her on a two-year global adventure to explore these remarkable animals and their relationship to humans. Casey examines the work of John Lilly, a scientist whose interest in dolphins led him down some very strange paths; visits a Hawaiian community who believes dolphins are key to enlightenment; travels to Ireland, where 'the world's most loyal animal' has delighted tourists for decades; and explores the ancient Minoans' interdependence on dolphins in Crete. She finds that dolphins can call themselves by name, recognise their reflections, count, grieve, infer, seduce, form cliques, conduct rescue operations, and even throw tantrums. Yet there is a dark side to our relationship with these beautiful animals. Dolphins are the stars of a global, multibillion-dollar captivity industry - a sinister, lucrative trade in which animals are captured and kept in brutal conditions. Casey's reportage takes her to the trade's harrowing epicentre in the Solomon Islands, and to the Japanese town of Taiji, made infamous by the Oscar - winning documentary The Cove, where she chronicles protests against the annual slaughter and sale of dolphins. In the tradition of Susan Orlean and Donovan Hohn, Voices in the Ocean is a thrilling, compassionate, imperative, and wonderfully lyrical account of the other intelligent life on the planet.