"The Oceans" by Ellen J. Prager with Sylvia A. Earle (2000)
"...despite the enormous strides we have made in the past century toward understanding the nature of the sea, fully 95 percent of the ocean remains to be explored. Given the magnitude of what our modest ventures have revealed to date, and given how much more remains to be found... Can we even make an intelligent guess at what it might be?"
Both of the authors of this book have backgrounds in marine science and exploration. With regard to the actual writing of it, Ellen J. Prager did all the heavy lifting. Sylvia A. Earle, her more famous colleague, provided most of the inspiration. Earle has been the subject of a Netflix documentary, and has been mentioned as a possible nominee for the position of Science Laureate.
After a short introduction, the chapters of the book are laid out in a very logical progression. Their titles are fairly self-explanatory, and are, in order: Oceans of the Past, The Seas of Today, Oceans and Climate, The Geologic Ocean, The Biological Ocean, and A Once Bountiful Sea. Two afterwards, each written by one of the authors, conclude the book with a look at the current state of the oceans, and how we might modify our attitudes and actions with regard to pollution, fishing, and other ocean-related topics.
Having taken a Physical Geography class in college, most of this material was familiar to me. The possible exception was The Biological Ocean chapter, which was of course more specific to its subject. Even so, I found most of the book engaging, and the section on waves was particularly relevant, given that I live 20 minutes from the ocean.
For the most part The Oceans felt like a textbook, and even though Ellen J. Prager has a tendency to overstate the obvious, there were enough interesting factoids to keep me reading to the end of the book. I can't say that I would bother to seek out either of the authors' other works, but this book was both informative and competently written.