Blurbs & Reviews

Top Pick for Summer Reading — Ocean Outbreak


“As a marine ecologist specializing in disease, Drew Harvell worries most about the threat posed by microbes, because in oceans beset by so many stresses, disease-causing microbes can gain the upper hand and bring about rapid, wide-scale ecological change. Ocean Outbreak brilliantly lays out the risk of disease and smart plans for improving ocean health.”
Ted Danson actor, activist and founding member, Oceana

“From salmon to seastars, abalone to corals, marine disease pioneer Drew Harvell’s Ocean Outbreak eloquently captures today’s threats to the ocean and their solutions.”
Jane Lubchenco, Professor, Oregon State University; former Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA; inaugural U.S. Science Envoy for the Ocean

“With riveting storytelling and a chilling sense of urgency, Drew Harvell astutely analyzes catastrophic outbreaks decimating four kinds of iconic sea creatures with consequences that affect everyone, everywhere.  Knowing is the key to caring, and Ocean Outbreak has what it takes to up-end current complacency and inspire actions to heal the harm humans have imposed on the sea – while there is still time.”
Sylvia Earle, National Geographic Society Explorer-in-Residence and founder of Mission Blue

“Part memoir and part science expose, Ocean Outbreak is a recipe for launching into the unknown, providing a roadmap for how one person can marshal the world of science to win against a global peril.”
Steve Palumbi, author, Hopkins Marine Lab, Stanford

“A marine medical who-dunnit, where the patients include sea stars who faced odds worse than humans did during the Black Death.  It is also a tale of hope, thanks to the dedication of a small band of scientists, including the author, who work tirelessly to understand and reduce the threats that disease poses to ocean life.”
Nancy Knowlton, author, Citizens of the Sea


“Despite the daunting challenge that marine diseases present, Harvell’s book manages to inspire both pragmatism and optimism, which likely stems from the immense number of people working alongside Harvell to better understand these issues.”
(Forbes Online, 4/22/2019)

“[Harvell] does a first-rate job of inspiring readers, and of providing the right kind of proselytising to turn marine epidemiology into a go-to career for a new and concerned generation.”
(New Scientist, 5/29/2019)

“Harvell gives readers an inside look at the diseases that are on the rise beneath the waves…in a detailed, engaging narrative.”

“Harvell vividly recounts her work at the front line, studying die-offs such as the past decade’s catastrophic starfish crash…a succinct summation of two decades of research.”
(Nature, 4/10/2019)

“A sobering account of what is happening to our seas…This book is a must-read for all who care about the future of our oceans.”
(Times Higher Education, 4/16/2019)

“Harvell skillfully navigates through various outbreaks, breaking down what’s happening as well as root causes.  And she provides ample hope: often times, by addressing human health issues, we can also help marine creatures.”
(Cool Green Science/The Nature Conservancy, 6/11/2019)

“This well-written narrative can benefit a wide range of audiences.  It provides insights not only into marine diseases but also into the constraints and practices of scientists responding to environmental threats.”

“[Harvell] is a writer with a style that is as captivating as it is informative.”
(The Well-Read Naturalist, 4/4/2019)

“Harvell is a skilled science writer and covers the topics with sufficient depth to keep disease aficionados on their toes, marveling at the complexity of diseases in the ocean…The narrative is beautifully written and designed to even be consumed by people who know nothing about infectious diseases or, worse yet, might fear words like “microbe” or “pathogen” the way a 6th grade math phobe would look at his/her first quadratic equation.”
(The SeaDoc Society, 5/1/2019)

“We’ve all heard the oceans are sick, but this book helps explain why through recent histories of four iconic marine animals.”
(Society of Environmental Journalists, 6/5/2019)

Check out A Sea of Troubles by the Cornell Alumni Magazine!