What is a Sea Dog?Why it's any dog who loves the water,Or lives along the shore.Whose tail wags and ears jumpWhen stormy winds roar.
Join little Skipper, a curious puppy in an orange life preserver, as she meets a galaxy of sea dogs from past and present. What Is a Sea Dog? combines poetry, history, and fun in a celebration of the many dogs who love the water.
Inspired by the exhibit Sea Dogs! Great Tails of the Sea at Mystic Seaport, What Is a Sea Dog? was written and illustrated by two seafaring storytellers, historian John Jensen and artist/writer Richard J. King. Both have known many real sea dogs.
John Jensen is an applied historian and marine archaeologist who has studied North American maritime frontier shipwrecks from the Grand Banks of Newfoundland to the edges of the Bering Sea. His more than thirty years of Great Lakes experience began with a position as an engineer/deckhand aboard the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee research vessel Neeskay and continued with many seasons surveying shipwrecks as a professional underwater archaeologist with the Wisconsin Historical Society. In addition to his early seagoing education, Jensen earned a BA in history from Lawrence University, an MA in maritime history and underwater archaeology from East Carolina University, and MS and PhD degrees in history from Carnegie Mellon University. He has been published in numerous history and academic journals, and is also the author of Stories from the Wreckage: A Great Lakes Maritime History Inspired by Shipwrecks. He lives in Pensacola, Florida.
Richard J. King is an author and illustrator. Most recently, he wrote the nonfiction books Ahab's Rolling Sea: A Natural History of Moby-Dick, lauded in Science, Nature, and American Scholar. He is also the author of Lobster, which was acclaimed by the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and The Devil's Cormorant: A Natural History, which was short-listed for the ASLE Creative Book Award and rated as one of the top five science books of 2013 by Library Journal. His current projects continue to explore the history of our relationship with marine life and the sea in a forthcoming illustrated collection of bite-sized environmental histories of ocean animals, titled An Ocean Bestiary (Chicago, 2023), and in a history of singlehanded mariners and the blue environmental movement, to be titled Sailing Alone (Penguin UK, 2024). He has been sailing on tall ships for over twenty-five years; when he is not at sea, he lives in Santa Cruz, California.