With much of the west side of Vancouver Island home to some of the most treacherous conditions facing sailors, author and archaeologist Rick James has no end of fascinating stories to write about in his Raincoast Chronicles series.
James charts 140 years of ship wrecks along the B.C. coast, beginning with Maria J. Smith, the Flying Dutchman of the West Coast, which earned the nickname for sailing 500 miles from where she was abandoned by salvage crews to land in Bella Bella – the second time the ship saved herself from disaster.
James also gives up some secrets, such as the background for the name Wreck Beach, and a profile of a prolific diver named Fred Rogers.
James’s clear writing style and brevity makes the stories lively reads. He draws on his skills as a maritime historian, photographer and field archaeologist.
Readers may also recognize him from the television documentary The Sea Hunters.
Author: Rick James
Published by: Harbour Publishing
Available at: local bookstores
List price: $24.95