BRAD MATSEN is the author of "Jacques Cousteau: The Sea King, "Titanic'"s Last Secrets: The Further Adventures of Shadow Divers John Chatterton and Richie Kohler, Descent: The Heroic Discovery of the Abyss, " and many other books about the sea and its inhabitants. He was a creative producer for the television series "The Shape of Life, " and his articles on marine science and the environment have appeared in "Mother Jones, Audubon, " and "Natural History, " among other publications. He lives in Port Townsend, Washington.
"Compulsive reading. . . . Matsen's well-constructed book employs the established technique of novels with many simultaneous activities being dealt with chapter by chapter, and provides a rich backdrop of the circumstances on shore and the lives of some of the individuals and their families, as well as an account of the disaster itself." --Newark "Star-Ledger ""A spare, fast-paced account of the Piper Alpha tragedy as riveting as it is unsettling. . . . Through interviews with survivors and their families and an exhaustive review of the record, Matsen uncovers a disturbing tale of corporate negligence, criminal disregard and a reckless drive for profit. At the same time he brings to light uncommon acts of heroism among survivors and rescuers as well as those who work for increased safety standards in this most dangerous of professions. . . . Matsen meticulously details the circumstances surrounding the catastrophe. But more than that, he sensitively portrays the personal lives of many victims, survivors and their anguished families. His reports from the nearby town of Aberdeen, where many of the offshore workers lived, are heartbreaking." --"Seattle Times" "Death and Oil is a personal book for Brad Matsen and his detailed look at the disaster is an epic success. And it is a book that should be read by anyone caught in crisis of petro-conscience." --Boston Book Bums blog "With the same meticulous research employed in books on sea explorer Jacques Cousteau and the mysteries of the oceans, Matsen ("Jacques Cousteau: The Sea King") takes on the devastating 1988 Piper Alpha oil rig tragedy. . . . When he details the unfortunate history of fires, explosions, even collapses, of rigs, the Piper Alpha disaster is put into context, making rig work one of the most hazardous jobs on the planet. In the end, Matsen's remarkable book is a stunning tribute to the survivors and their families." --"Publishers Weekly ""Matsen's horrifyingly readable accoun