Monday, October 19, 2015


Book Description for Reef Libre:

Cuba reefs host apex predators and coral cover at optimal levels. While Cuban reef vitality may be linked to economic default and no shoreline development, no agricultural pesticides or fertilizers and limited human population growth, the Castro regime is aggressively developing its reef potential.

Seas to the south are now 100% shark protected.

Most Cuba travelogues advise “getting off the beaten path,” but Reef Libre examines that path, to see where it might lead as things change. Will Cuba reefs remain protected? Or is this perilous age of natural decline a last chance to see a healthy reef system?

Robert Wintner and the Snorkel Bob Jardines de la Reina Expedition herein provide narrative insight with photos and video. First stop is the baseline: Havana urban density. Down south at Cayo Largo, reef collapse seems imminent with 600 guests changing daily, and the phosphate-laden laundry water flowing directly to the deep blue sea. Will Cuba’s Ministry of Tourism step up with the Jardines de la Reina paradigm? Rising from the Golfo de Ana MarĂ­a, Jardines is a thousand square miles of mangrove estuary, for ages compromised by constant extraction of its biggest predators, taken as food. Protected, it now rises on the world reef stage.

A DVD comes with the book in a paper sleeve glued to the inside cover. Reef Libre, the movie, runs about an hour.

Buy the book:    Amazon    Barnes & Noble

Watch the Trailer:

Author's Bio:

Best known as Snorkel Bob in Hawaii and around the world, Robert Wintner captures Cuba above and below the surface with urgency and hope. As a pioneer in fish portraiture, Wintner demonstrated social structure and etiquette in reef society. Reef Libre goes to political context, in which human folly will squander Cuba’s reefs as well—unless natural values can at last transcend political greed. As pundits joust over who did what to whom and why, Wintner ponders reef prospects in view of political changes.

Robert Wintner has authored many novels and story collections. Reef Libre is his fourth reef commentary with photos and his first overview of survival potential in a political maelstrom. He lives and works in Hawaii, still on the front lines of the campaign to stop the aquarium trade around the world.

Connect with the author:     Website  ~   Facebook

My Review of Reef Libre:

The pictures in this book are amazing. They are so beautiful. This book is about the reefs of Cuba. A DVD also comes with the book, and it is just amazing, not just the filming but also the way they explain the different species. They get up close and personal with the sea life. Between the book and video this could make me want to learn to swim. I would love to go to Cuba and see all the sites both above water and below.
This book and DVD are not just a bunch of pictures. You get history, you get different species, you also get to know how some species are almost extinct in some areas but are plentiful in Cuba because they are protected by law.
I personally was very interested in the story in the book, my Grand Daughter however was thrilled with the pictures in the book. Every time she comes she sets down with this book and just oohs and Ahs at the pictures. She also loves watching the DVD. I am thrilled with this book and it will have a place of honor in my living room for years to come. I learned not only tons of about the sea life featured int he book and video but also some about Cuba as well. The writing and narrating in the book and DVD are very informative and engaging. There is nothing about this book and DVD I do not love.
I would never have the courage to go swimming with the sharks or the crocs for that matter but am so glad Robert and his crew did. The pictures and video is so clear you can actually imagine your are there with them.
I received this product for free or  at a discounted price in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.


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  1. Thanks, Teresa, for joining the fun, insight and adventures in Cuba. We shared your apprehension on first seeing dorsal fins surrounding the dingy, but by day 2 we had learned the big lesson that sharks have for people: Fear is in the eye of the beholder. All sharks are social, curious, engaging and committed to keeping oceans clean. Cuba is unique for its artistry, intelligence, outspoken honesty and beauty--and for species and habitat that still thrive there. Maybe now we can live with a shared regard for reefs and each other.

    1. I really loved the book and the DVD. The pictures are AMAZING!!! Was almost like swimming beside yall.