This is a fascinating book, which tells the human story through our relation to the sea. The focus is on trade, rather than fishing and takes the story from the early settlement of the Polynesian islands of the Pacific to the present day. Extraordinary in its scope and fascinating in its detail, Abulafia ends with a plea for the sea to be named a UNESCO World Heritage site. One other non-subject related thing to note. Abulafia resorts to BC and AD, claiming they stand for “backward counting” and “accepted date”. A very neat improvement on the unsatisfactory BC/BCE innovation. Let’s hope it catches on.