Amphibious Soul: Finding the Wild in a Tame World (Hardcover)

Amphibious Soul: Finding the Wild in a Tame World By Craig Foster Cover Image

Amphibious Soul: Finding the Wild in a Tame World (Hardcover)


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“An important book that will transform how we think about being human. … that will inspire hope.”—Jane Goodall

How can we reclaim the soul-deepening wildness that grounds us and energizes us when so much of the modern world seems designed to tame us?

In this thrilling memoir of a life spent exploring the most incredible places on Earth—from the Great African Seaforest to the crocodile lairs of the Okavango Delta—Craig Foster reveals how we can attend to the earthly beauty around us and deepen our love for all living things, whether we make our homes in the country, the city, or anywhere in between.

Foster explores his struggles to remain present to life when a disconnection from nature and the demands of his professional life begin to deaden his senses. And his own reliance on nature’s rejuvenating spiritual power is put to the test when catastrophe strikes close to home.

Foster’s lyrical, riveting Amphibious Soul draws on his decades of daily ocean dives, wisdom from Indigenous teachers, and leading-edge science.

Includes a beautiful four-color tracking journal with Foster's photographs and a QR code leading to 27 films that captured key moments in the book.

Craig Foster is one of the world’s leading natural history filmmakers and co-founder of the Sea Change Project. He won the Academy Award for Best Documentary for My Octopus Teacher, and has created over 100 films and documentaries in addition to his photography. He lives in South Africa.

"Amphibious Soul is an important book that will transform how we think about being human. Craig Foster's skilled storytelling reminds us that humans are not separate from the incredible, biological intelligence all around us. This book isn't about learning how to be wild but rather a guide to recognizing and reconnecting with the wild in and around us. It is a book that will inspire hope." — Jane Goodall

Amphibious Soul is the story of finding wildness in a world gone tame, and feeling the hearts of animals beating inside our own. …This book will guide you to find your own wild heart wherever you might live.”  — James Cameron

“Craig Foster’s powerful yet tender voice enchants in this meditation on what lies beneath, unexplored and unseen—both under the ocean’s surface, and within our own human nature. A wondrous, entertaining, and thought-provoking read.” — Shelby Van Pelt, New York Times bestselling author of Remarkably Bright Creatures

"Amphibious Soul will change the way you see the ocean, and your relationship to it. His scientific eye and wild mind are truly revelatory. A much-needed book that just might help us save the planet." — Suzanne Simard, New York Times Bestselling Author of Finding the Mother Tree

“As wondrous as a sunbeam illuminating the ocean, as moving as gazing into a shark’s primordial eye, as urgent as a breaking wave: Amphibious Soul is an invigorating dive into the waters of pure wild spirit. Craig Foster has written a magnificent book that imparts deep truths.”
Susan Casey, New York Times bestselling author of The Underworld: Journeys to the Depths of the Ocean

“A reminder of our responsibility to one another and to the natural world" — Yo-Yo Ma, Cellist

“the author’s deep reverence for nature….. and the evocative descriptions of his expeditions will transport readers. This is a potent source of wonder.” — Publishers Weekly

With haunting prose, Foster inspires thoughts about where we fit as humans within systems that have taken four and a half billion years to shape rocks and water into a vibrant planet. ... Foster succeeds as a master storyteller, artist, and filmmaker but his greatest contribution may be his approach to life.”
Sylvia Earle, National Geographic Explorer, Founder of Mission Blue, Ocean Elder, Former NOAA Chief Scientist

"The ocean could not ask for a better advocate than Craig Foster. This transformative story is the kind that inspires us towards insight, warmth and deep care for humanity and the planet we share. Amusing, thrilling, and revelatory."Kathy Sullivan, Former NASA Astronaut, Oceanographer

Candid, transporting, and philosophical, Foster pays tribute to his teachers animal and human and discerns lessons within his adventures harrowing and ecstatic. We must be amphibious, he tells us, and learn how to live in harmony and reciprocity with the wild.”
Booklist (starred review)

"Craig Foster’s unique perspective on the natural world is rooted in history, intimate experience, and a deep understanding of the importance of creating our own personal relationship with nature. Amphibious Soul is an urgent reminder that we each have a wild spirit, and that connecting with it is not only a source of joy but a necessary piece of our care for the planet."Christiana Figueres, Architect of the Paris Climate Agreement, Author of The Future We Choose

"Foster has a profound connection with the natural world. One born not simply of careful and respectful observation, but of intense involvement, indeed immersion. We forget it is the matrix in which we evolved, in which our minds originated. Amphibious Soul is a breath-takingly beautiful journey, by turns intellectual, emotional, even spiritual. Foster reminds us that we too are nature and in doing so, retunes us to the call of the wild." — Jackie Higgins, Filmmaker and author of Sentient: What Animals Reveal About Human Senses

"Amphibious Soul is a compelling call to reconnect with nature, and a vital reminder that no matter where or who we are, the wild world is where we belong. Craig is the messenger we need now, and grounded in both science and mystery, this is a book full of hope and a wild joy that will inspire readers to dive more deeply into the nature around them, wherever they are." — Ocean Robbins, Co-founder & CEO, Food Revolution Network, NYT Bestselling Author of The 31-Day Food Revolution

"Craig Foster’s heart-centered authenticity is pure magic, enabling a mastery in unparalleled original storytelling that awakens the human spirit. His stories are rhythmic like the tides, yet elicit a gripping unknowing that captures the imagination. His voice and narration lowers the center of gravity from head to heart, evoking feeling that is unlikely to be ever forgotten. He is truly an amphibious soul, tracker and guide who helps us all discover our connectedness with mother nature, and in doing so, discover a little something about our own human nature." — Pawan Patil, World Economic Forum, World Bank Advisor and Philanthropist

"Craig Foster's gently personal voice lulls the reader into a trance state that disguises the immense force of his message. As his achingly beautiful prose unfolds a story that arcs from wild childhood to alienation from the sea and finally to a prodigal return, we witness a soul finding its home port. What an urgently important book— a reminder of the sea creature within all of us." — Dr. Niobe Thompson, Anthropologist, Producer of CBC's science-and-nature program The Nature of Things

“The creator of the acclaimed My Octopus Teacher documentary celebrates the merits of getting out into the real world….. A lucid invitation to build ‘spider threads of connection and love’ with nature.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Craig Foster, has written a testament, personal and cosmic, rational and thrilling, to awaken in us that long lost human experience of being fully live in the natural world." — Ann Druyan, creative director of NASA’s Voyager Interstellar Record, co-creator with Carl Sagan of the COSMOS television series and the motion picture CONTACT