Readers are praising 30,000 Leagues Undersea. But Amazon is making it a Classic!


Fascinating. April 12, 2015

By Jean  Format: Kindle Edition |Verified Purchase

“Each story will allow you to put the book down at a convenient place, but you won’t want to. Lieutenant Commander (Retired) Vetter served in the exclusive submarine service in an even smaller niche of the service — as a deep submergence pilot. Literally every dive was groundbreaking in that hadn’t been done before and was unlikely to done again. Vetter relates his tale from his decision as a boy to pursue this calling to his retirement from the service and every harrowing event along the way. Arranged in a manner that keeps the reader riveted. If you’ve served in the military or enjoy reading about people who have, this book is for you.”

And then sweet Jean was so kind as to give it five stars. Thank you, Jean!


And this, the email I got just six hours after the book went on sale. Apparently, despite my advancing years, I still know how to keep a lady awake and suitably entertained in bed. 🙂

“WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It’s already 21h51 in South Africa and I can’t stop reading! I’ve just finished reading “Crossing Blades.” I love every single chapter!!!! “Whale Fall” had me staring in amazement. Then I had a lovely nervous breakdown when I saw your diagram of the interior of the sphere. I might have another one just thinking about it!! You’re an amazing artist.

“The Road Less Taken:” I loved it. You described it so well, I actually got motion sickness. On dry land, sitting in my bed. “Whitewater” WOW!!! I honestly love every chapter so far. … I really wanted to let you know, right now, how much I like your book!” — Hannetjie.

Dear Hannetjie, I thank you.


Karen wrote this:

I started reading the excerpted stories from 30,000 Leagues Undersea on my Kindle last night. Your storytelling is so informative and yet entertaining. Absolutely fascinating and a joy to read and learn from.  Thank you for sharing your adventures!!!

Thank you, Karen.


Finally, there was this:

“Tom, I have been truly enthralled by your emails on 30,000 Leagues Undersea. I’m anxiously awaiting a copy. … Your book will be joining books autographed by Ned Beach (Dust on The Sea), William R. Anderson (Nautilus 90 North), Dick O’Kane (Clear the Bridge) and Gene Fluckey (Thunder Below). I will place 30,000 Leagues Undersea in a place of honor. I certainly look forward to reading it.” Best wishes, Bill

Now, for those who don’t know, the four books Bill cites are all GREAT submarine adventure classics: the first by the man who first circled the globe submerged; the man who went to the North Pole under the ice in the first nuclear submarine; and the last two written by WWII Medal of Honor winners. He does me great honor to add me to THAT group of authors. And he does not mention, for he does not yet know, that he joins me there, for HE is in my book.  J


Now here’s the really funny part of all this: Here all along and three years after starting this book, I thought I was writing a collection of amusing sea stories, a genre-crossing memoir-anthology of good undersea adventure tales. And I was content with that: the role of comic sailor story-teller fits me. Hero is WAY too large.

But Amazon is selling my book as “World History – Expeditions and Discoveries,” where it has done surprisingly well. Within hours of release, it rose to #23,#343 overall [when you start up from 1 million-plus, that’s a damn long climb!]. And in that genre, I hit #3 as an Amazon Hot New Release and #11 overall – right between a new book about Earnest “you’re joking!” Shakleton and one by Stephen “holy crap!” Ambrose. And it stayed there most of the week. Check the link – it’s there now!

They are treating what I thought a book of mere adventure stories as a significant history.  Thanks to Amazon, it has ceased being a mere book of stories and become a personal account of actual history — not unlike a Lewis-and-Clark expedition account. The Dewey decimal system will want to shelve the book alongside Captain Cook, Ferdinand Magellan, and Thor Heyerdahl.

ME? With Richard Henry Dana and Joshua Slocum (who? – Wikipedia!). Who’d a thunk it? 🙂

You can find all my editions here: