Jacques Cousteau opened up the undersea world as no one has done before or since. But not generally know is the fascinating and compelling individual behind the acclaimed television personality.

With the cooperation of many of Jacques Cousteau’s collaborators, friends, and family, Brad Matsen gives us the first full picture of this remarkable life. Here is Cousteau working for the French resistance during World War II (for which he received France’s Croix de Guerre); developing—and risking his life to test—the regulator that made scuba diving possible; running the world’s largest scuba equipment manufacturing firm; becoming a legendary catalyst of the worldwide environmental movement; starring in The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau and in hundreds of documentaries; and publishing more than fifty books. And here is the widowed Cousteau marrying his longtime mistress—forty years his junior and the mother of two of his children—kindling a bitter family feud that continues to this day.

Vividly conveying the people, the adventure, the science, and the lure of the sea that shaped Cousteau’s life, Matsen paints a luminous portrait of a man who profoundly changed the way we view, and treat, our planet

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3 Responses to “Jacques Cousteau: The Sea King”


  1. 1 Rio Kid May 17, 2012 at 4:42 am

    Brad, I’m a big fan of yours. You are the co-author, along with Mr. Troll, of Planet Ocean, published by Ten Speed Press, I take it.

    I read your great book once, and am reading it again.

    Jacques Cousteau is also one of my heroes.

    “And now, Michel will attempt to ride zee manta ray into zee blue abyss.”

  2. 2 Daniella October 30, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    Ive been reading this wonderful book about one of my childhood heroes and surprised to learn that many children dont know about Jacque Cousteau. Im buying up copies from amazon to give as Christmas gifts. Apparently there is whole new generation who haven’t had exposure to this great adventurer. Thank you Brad for this delicious read!

    • 3 bradocean October 31, 2012 at 9:31 am

      Thank you for your kind words about my Cousteau biography. I hope your young friends catch ocean fever as millions of people did after watching JYC on television. Best regards, Brad Matsen


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