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Operating alone and unarmed on the bottom of the sea, the U.S. Navy's smallest nuclear-powered submarine is one of its biggest weapons. Tied up at a pier, the boat with the bright orange sail looks absolutely minuscule, innocent and out of place beside its big brothers, the fleet's huge missile-carrying and attack submarines, but it can dive deeper, stay down for a month, and accomplish missions far beyond the capabilities of any of them. The ship has been cloaked in mystery. It wasn't commissioned or given a name, and even today it is hardly known beyond a select fraternity of sailors and scientists. They simply call it the NR-1.
The little submarine was born in controversy, served in secrecy, survived potential catastrophe on numerous occasions, and is still in operation almost forty years after being concieved. It was and remains the only one of its kind ever built.
The story of the NR-1 is told against the tense background of the Cold War and peopled with such rich characters as the acerbic Admiral Hyman Rickover, ocean scientist Robert Ballard (who found the Titanic), the designers and builders who faced almost impossible tasks to give life to the ship, the unique officers and sailors who took the little boat down into depths on covert missions, and the families who waited for them on shore, unaware that there would be no escape if the boat ran into trouble.
"Dark Waters: An Insider's Account of the NR-1, the Cold War's Undercover Nuclear Sub" is a thrill-a-minute book of submarine adventure, imminent danger, personal bravery, technological wonder and historic discovery. It will be a proud addition to the shelves of readers who love stories of the sea, history and intrigue.
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"A useful addition to modem naval history and pure candy for submarine buffs." -- Roland Green - Booklist Review 12/16/2002
"Move over Cussler and Clancy, here comes a new author to tell the true life story of American derring-do... Great reading!!" -- Gene Kranz, former NASA Flight Director and author of the New York Times bestseller FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION.
"The NR-1 was Rickover's baby, his version of an underwater Airforce One, a boat he built with sheer chutzpah..." -- Sherry Sontag, co-author of BLIND MAN'S BLUFF: The Untold Story of American Submarine Espionage
"This book had me up till 3 a.m. ... All submariners and Cold War history buffs will absolutely love this book!" -- Michael DiMercurio, a USA Today best-selling author of submarine novels
"the commitment and heroism of men who ventured into unknown and hostile seas below was not unlike that required in the exploration of the heavens above." -- Captain Gene Cernan, USN (Ret.), commander of Apollo 17 and the last man to walk on the moon.
Dark Waters is the story of the Submarine NR-1
How and why it was built
The people who brought it to life
The excitement encountered during its early operation
All told as an action-adventure tale from the perspective of an initial crewmember. It includes 16 pages of largely unpublished photographs of the boat and the principal people involved.
The NR-1 is the subject and we maintain several interwoven threads to describe its progress:
The first person narrative of a crewmember
Admiral Rickover and his drive to create the boat
The NR-1’s progress from idea to actual operations
The rapidly changing backdrop of Cold War events
The recollections of the people who built and manned it.
The book contains chapters that:
Establish what was going on and the narrator’s place
Describe a typical Cold War submarine patrol
Summarize events leading to the building of the NR-1
Detail the construction and testing of the boat
Follow the crew:
During their training for the NR-1
While they learned to operate in contact with the bottom
Reconstruct a number of exciting missions, and
Reveal some of the unexpected adventure experienced.
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