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SMITHSONIAN JOURNEYS

Cruise the Southern Seas

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Books for

Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXPAC215. Buy these 4 items as a set for $95 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
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The Statues That Walked, Unraveling the Mystery of Easter Island

The Statues That Walked, Unraveling the Mystery of Easter Island

by Carl Lipo | Terry Hunt

  • ARCHAEOLOGY
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 237 PAGES

Drawing on archaeological evidence and their own work, Hunt and Lip challenge Jared Diamond's view of eco-catastrophe in this convincing new history of Rapa Nui. (EIL26, $16.95)

Pacific Journeys

Pacific Journeys

by Peter Hendrie

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2003
  • HARD COVER
  • 224 PAGES

A striking portfolio of 330 color photographs of the people, nature and landscape of the region, Hendrie's gorgeous book includes images from his many journeys to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, to Tahiti and the Marquesas, Tonga, Fiji, Easter Island and Hawaii over the last 20 years. (PAC183, $45.00)

Lonely Planet South Pacific

Lonely Planet South Pacific

by Lonely Planet

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 614 PAGES

A comprehensive, detailed and practical guide to travel in the South Pacific from the Solomon Islands across to Pitcairn. (PAC120, $28.99)

South Pacific Islands Map

South Pacific Islands Map

by Nelles

  • MAP

Covering the Pacific from Pitcairn to Papua New Guinea at a scale of 13:000,000. With 30 individual island maps, including Easter Island, New Caledonia, the Solomon Islands, Marquesas, French Polynesia, Vanuatu and Fiji. (PAC164, $13.95)

 
Easter Island Map

Easter Island Map


by ITMB

  • 2006
  • MAP

A colorful topographic map (1:30,000). (EIL06, $10.95)

Reference Map of Oceania, The Pacific Islands of Micronesia, Polynesia, Melanesia

Reference Map of Oceania, The Pacific Islands of Micronesia, Polynesia, Melanesia


by James A. Bier

  • 2009
  • MAP

This double-sided sheet shows the whole Pacific from Hawaii west to French Polynesia, Micronesia and Papua New Guinea (1:17,460,000) with detailed maps of 52 islands and island chains on the reverse. (PAC07, $9.95)

Easter Island, the Essential Guide

Easter Island, the Essential Guide


by Kay Sanger

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 169 PAGES

An archaeologist who has worked on Rapa Nui since the 1980s and past president of the Easter Island Foundation, Sanger covers the history, archaeology, people and practicalities of Easter Island in this authoritative guide. (EIL17, $20.00)

Insight Guide Chile

Insight Guide Chile


by Insight Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 380 PAGES

This glossy guide provides a full-color introduction by a team of experts to the land, people, history and attractions of Chile. Brief background essays highlight important topics. With many local and regional maps. (CHI03, $24.99)

Lonely Planet Tahiti and French Polynesia

Lonely Planet Tahiti and French Polynesia


by Tony Wheeler | Jean-Bernard Carillet

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 296 PAGES

This practical guide to Tahiti and French Polynesia includes a good overview of history, culture and nature and helpful travel details for your journey. (PAC86, $22.99)

Tahiti & French Polynesia Guide

Tahiti & French Polynesia Guide


by Jan Prince

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 632 PAGES

This authoritative, in-depth guide covers all French Polynesia, including not just Tahiti and the Society Islands (the author lives on Moorea) but also the little-discovered Austral Islands and the alluring Marquesas. Sixth edition. (PAC169, $19.95)

Aphrodite's Island, The European Discovery of Tahiti

Aphrodite's Island, The European Discovery of Tahiti


by Anne Salmond

  • HISTORY
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 544 PAGES

Louis-Antoine de Bougainville, James Cook, Samuel Wallis and many more early European voyagers join local heroes, Tahitian warriors and kings in this authoritative, richly detailed history of French Polynesia and its allure. Author and anthropologist Anne Salmond (Two Worlds, The Trail of the Cannibal Dogs) is a professor at the University of Auckland. (PAC219, $26.95)

Collapse, How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed

Collapse, How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed


by Jared Diamond

  • HISTORY
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 575 PAGES

Diamond tackles nothing less than the history and fate of civilization in this compelling book in which he offers case studies, present and past, of societies that work and societies that do not, devoting 100 carefully reasoned pages, for example, to the fate of the Norse settlements in Greenland (climatic change, Inuit) and another big section on Easter Island (deforestation, hubris). This revised edition includes a new afterword. (GEN324, $19.00)

Island at the End of the World

Island at the End of the World


by Steven Roger Fischer

  • HISTORY
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 215 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

Fischer's cultural and political history takes in the full sweep of Easter Island from prehistory through civil rights protests of the 1960s. (EIL18, $32.00)

Noa Noa, The Tahiti Journal

Noa Noa, The Tahiti Journal


by Paul Gauguin | John Miller

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 1985
  • PAPER
  • 96 PAGES

Gauguin's impressions of two years in French Polynesia, originally published in 1919. With 24 black-and-white illustrations. (PAC13, $5.95)

The People of the Sea, Environment, Identity, and History in Oceania

The People of the Sea, Environment, Identity, and History in Oceania


by Paul D'Arcy

  • HISTORY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 292 PAGES

D'Arcy looks at the oceangoing traditions of the peoples of the Pacific from 1770 to the present in this scholarly but accessible overview. (PAC310, $25.00)

Kon-Tiki, Across the Pacific by Raft

Kon-Tiki, Across the Pacific by Raft


by Thor Heyerdahl | F. H. Lyon

  • EXPLORATION
  • 1990
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

The hugely popular account of a daring 1947 voyage that sailed along the Humboldt and Equatorial currents from Peru to Tahiti. Apart from the sheer adventure, Heyerdahl wanted to show the world that Polynesians could have settled the region. With photographs. (PAC10, $5.99)

On the Road of the Winds

On the Road of the Winds


by Patrick Vinton Kirch

  • ARCHAEOLOGY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 424 PAGES

An excellent scholarly review of the prehistory and archaeology of Pacific civilizations before European contact. (PAC101, $41.95)

The Cruise of the Snark

The Cruise of the Snark


by Jack London

  • EXPLORATION
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

A facsimile edition of London's richly evocative account of his ambitious 1906-1907 voyage aboard a 43-foot ketch from San Francisco to Hawaii, the Marquesas, Tuomotos, Fiji and the Solomon Islands with his wife and two crew members. Includes 119 original photographs of places and people. (PAC17, $14.95)

The Happy Isles of Oceania

The Happy Isles of Oceania


by Paul Theroux

  • EXPLORATION
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 480 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

The peripatetic author flies off to Australia and New Zealand with a kayak and ends up exploring much of Melanesia and Polynesia, including Tonga, Fiji and the Marquesas, in this wickedly funny, wide-ranging tale. (PAC03, $15.95)

We, the Navigators, The Ancient Art of Landfinding in the Pacific

We, the Navigators, The Ancient Art of Landfinding in the Pacific


by David Lewis

  • EXPLORATION
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 464 PAGES

This engaging classic examines how Stone Age Polynesians may have navigated the Pacific. The scholarly volume will appeal to seafarers and modern Pacific travelers. (PAC35, $31.99)

Easter Island, Island of Enigmas

Easter Island, Island of Enigmas


by John Dos Passos

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 150 PAGES

An amateur archaeologist, novelist Dos Passos mixes travel and observation with the history of exploration of Rapa Nui in this brief, engaging book. (EIL23, $15.00)

In the South Seas

In the South Seas


by Robert Louis Stevenson

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 283 PAGES

A set of Stevenson's personal sketches describing a year of travels in the Marquesas, Paumotus and the Gilberts, first written as magazine articles and then reworked to incorporate detail on local peoples and history, published posthumously. (PAC147, $17.00)

Rapa Nui, Island of Memory

Rapa Nui, Island of Memory


by Georgia Lee

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 212 PAGES

Full of anecdote and incident, Lee's lively memoir of fieldwork on Rapa Nui celebrates the people and life on the island since the 1980s. (EIL20, $25.00)

The Fragile Edge, Diving and Other Adventures in the South Pacific

The Fragile Edge, Diving and Other Adventures in the South Pacific


by Julia Whitty

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

Whitty illuminates coral reefs, their inhabitants and the pleasures of diving in this memoir of underwater adventures in Rangiroa, Tuvalu and Moorea. Winner of the 2008 Kiriyama Prize and John Burroughs Medal. (PAC173, $14.95)

Easter Island

Easter Island


by Jennifer Vanderbes

  • LITERATURE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 308 PAGES

In this mesmerizing novel, Vanderbes spins parallel stories of two young women on Easter Island, one an archaeologist with a 1913 expedition and the other an American botanist who visits 60 years later. (EIL13, $15.00)

Mutiny on the Bounty

Mutiny on the Bounty


by James Norman Hall | Charles Nordhoff

  • LITERATURE
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 379 PAGES

The well-known (and loved) fictional account of the voyage of the HMS Bounty, greatly enjoyable despite its probable lack of accuracy regarding Bligh's personality. (PAC11, $15.99)

South Sea Tales

South Sea Tales


by Robert Louis Stevenson

  • LITERATURE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 289 PAGES

These entertaining tales, set among both real and mythical islands, show Stevenson's keen observations of island life. (PAC15, $14.95)

Tales of the South Pacific

Tales of the South Pacific


by James A. Michener

  • LITERATURE
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 384 PAGES

The first of the big Michener novels, set in World War II Polynesia. It's great fun, and the basis for the Rogers & Hammerstein musical "South Pacific." (PAC18, $16.00)

Astronomy 101, From the Sun and Moon to Wormholes and Warp Drive, Key Theories, Discoveries, and Facts About the Universe

Astronomy 101, From the Sun and Moon to Wormholes and Warp Drive, Key Theories, Discoveries, and Facts About the Universe


by Brent Stewart

  • SCIENCE
  • 2013
  • HARD COVER
  • 288 PAGES

This "Crash Course in the Science of Space" touches lightly on a variety of outer space subjects with suggestions for additional resources should readers want to learn more about a specific subject. (SCI332, $15.95)

The Snorkeller's Guide to the Coral Reef, From the Red Sea to the Pacific Ocean

The Snorkeller's Guide to the Coral Reef, From the Red Sea to the Pacific Ocean


by Paddy Ryan

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 184 PAGES

A bestseller, this take-along guide covers coral reefs, fish, invertebrates and plants of the Indo-Pacific and includes 200 color photographs. (DIV18, $21.99)

Reef Fish Identification, Tropical Pacific

Reef Fish Identification, Tropical Pacific


by Paul Humann | Ned Deloach | Gerald Allen | Roger Steene

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2003
  • FLEXI-BOUND
  • 450 PAGES

This comprehensive guide to Indo-Pacific reef fishes features 2,500 color photographs. (DIV49, $48.00)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.