Date: 11/13/2012

This week’s show is entitled FLAME ANGELS after a novel of Oceania recently published by Robert Winter, aka “Snorkel Bob,” a marine photographer and activist seeking to preserve tropical fish and the coral reefs in Hawaii. We’ll also talking with Bob about NEPTUNE SPEAKS, a collection of his photographs with commentary about the threats to tropical fish and the coral reefs of the world.

Listen to the Program

Our Questions about FLAME ANGELS

–FLAME ANGELS is the story of Ravid Rockulz, scuba dive leader, underwater photographer, and an activist working to preserve reefs and fish fish in Hawaii, Tahiti, and elsewhere. We’re not going to make the error of assuming that you and Ravid are the same person, but there are some obvious similarities. Please tell us a little about Ravid Rockulz and how you conceived the character. Which parts of his character are autobiographical?

–What are “Flame Angels” and how do they become the title of the book? [“Free diving, he (Ravid) rises slowly . . . into the thickening mix with emperor and regal angels, blue damsels, turquoise chromis, all the little fins and his heart aflutter till–wait! Flame angels” p. 208]

–Snorkel Bob, we wonder if you’d be willing to read a segment to us? We especially appreciated the segment where Ravid is exploring underwater photography and meets up with a creature he had not anticipated. [p. 50 “A diver has only two hands, … p. 52 Here was substance, vision and purpose instead of a void.”]

–In FLAME ANGELS, Ravid Rockulz initially lives in Maui, Hawaii, but the book opens with him leaving for Tahiti, the island paradise of Gaugin and Marlon Brando. His descriptions of what’s happening in Maui are pretty scathing. Please explain.

–We learn that Ravid’s leaving Hawaii is precipitated by being dragged far out to sea, duct taped, and thrown overboard by the former boyfriend of his wife and his henchmen. What follows is a scene of deep terror as Ravid struggles to get back to shore. Sharks, especially, prey on his mind, if not his body, and sharks figure prominently in the novel, including Mano, a shark who eventually takes a good bite out of one of the villains of the novel. Please tell us more about the terror of the deep and what sharks represent, to Ravid, and to the reader

–We don’t want to give away too much, but we will explain that Ravid goes on to a kind of stardom and activist power that alerts the public to the dangers of extinction faced by tropical fish and coral reefs. Please tell us why this rise to the heights of PR figures so prominently in the novel. Is an appearance on Jay Leno or Oprah the only way activists can be heard?

FLAME ANGELS available from Iquana Press in both print and electronic forms. You can learn more at <>. You can also order the book direct at

Our Questions About NEPTUNE SPEAKS

–Please tell us about your own evolution as a photographer. How did you learn to get such amazing photos?

–Who is Neptune for whom does he speak? [“Nepture speaks for wilderness values….Neptune loves fish in abundance but scoffs at ‘sustainability’ and ‘best management practices.” p. 7]

–The fish also speak in this book. What do they have to say? [e.g. “A devil scorpion fish…conveys reef community outrage that so much crime against nature should make the neighborhoods unsafe.” p. 173]

–Your comments and those of the fish are often lighthearted, but the message is serious. Why did you choose to include humor in the book?]

–In our previous interview, you talked about some good news–Maui County banning collection of reef fish. What else is happening in Hawaii and around the world on behalf of the fish?

–You also talk about poachers, and it’s obvious that legal supervision and enforcement on the reefs is difficult. What progress have you seen since we last talked?

–In the novel and in your other writings, you (and Ravid Rockulz) have said, “Mr. Gorbachev, smash these aquariums.” What are you recommending? [Does your concern include professional aquariums like the New York Aquarium and Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium?]

–Snorkel Bob, you are a prolific writer and you put your money where your mouth is with the Snorkel Bob Foundation. What is the foundation and what are its?

–As time permits, please tell us about some of your myriad other projects. [National Humane Society, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, Earthjustice.]

–How can KZFR listeners become involved with and support your work? <>