- the book about being in love with the ocean -

SHE DOWN THERE - movie rights optioned
I am happy to announce that SPIER FILMS have optioned the rights to develop a feature film based on SHE DOWN THERE.

What really excites me about working with Michael Auret and his team at Spier is their established international footprint (they will bring in a Canadian partner for this project) alongside a deep commitment to fostering African talent. It feels like a great fit!

I’ll keep you updated as the project takes shape.

SHE DOWN THERE paperback
now available in
Canada and USA
... or get SHE DOWN THERE as an e-Book from anywhere in the world:
Please leave a review and rating once you’ve enjoyed the read.

And of course SHE DOWN THERE is available in all major bookstores throughout South Africa.
Stay tuned as She Down There becomes available in other countries.
Professor George Branch Review

Professor George Branch and his wife Margo are well known to South African (and international) marine enthusiasts and readers. Their Living Shores - Interacting with southern Africa's Marine Ecosystems - is a classic. It's been in print since 1981, and was a key reference book for me when I wrote SHE DOWN THERE. They have been hero's of mine for that long. A few months ago I had the great pleasure of exchanging signed copies of our books - one of the highlights of my writing journey so far. When George agreed to write a review of SHE DOWN THERE I was nervous. What if he hated the book? His soon-to-be-published 900-word review brought relief and heartfelt gratitude. Here are a few excerpts:

"Buried in the mists of my memory is a book review that described some books as being good, others brilliant, and just a few that are ‘Aha!’ books. This is one of those. It is profoundly moving and plumbs the depths of human emotions. Its span is so great that it is difficult in a few words to catch what it covers."

I had to laugh (and cringe at my error) at this comment:

"Lynton’s formal training as a marine biologist shines through in the accuracy of his depictions. It required serious nit-pickiness to find fault: black mussels in Mozambique? Oh please, Lynton, black mussels are a cool-water species, replaced by brown mussels in warmer climes. Actually, my teasing tone reveals just how hard I had to dig to find fault: the impeccable scientific veracity of the book shines through its pages."

He continues ...

"But this is a novel, and the greatest depths of the book lie not so much in the science, as in the passionate love for the sea and the deep concerns about big issues: extinction, overfishing, plastic pollution, rare and endangered species. Lynton has a visceral feel for the ocean and its denizens."

"Inextricably entwined throughout the book are personal experiences that plumb the depths of human emotions, from the despair of death to the joyous love story so central to the book – which gently unfolds into deep passion and meshes seamlessly with another love affair: with the sea itself.
It would be remiss not to remark on the cover of the book by Jacques Kaiser, which Lynton describes as ‘a work of art’. It brilliantly captures the mystique of the book, with the swirl of emotions one experiences underwater, a hint of the romance, and the iconic creatures that are main players in the book. In a way, the cover is an abstract of my own appreciation for the book: the minuteness of humans in the grandeur of the oceans and its swirl of life, and the intimacy of our interactions with it.
Bravo, Lynton: quite simply, a unique book that haunts one long after reading, leaving one both challenged and uplifted. Lynton did me and my wife Margo the honor of inscribing a copy ‘there is a bit of both of you in the pages’. More than bit, Lynton; more than a bit! Your achievements as marine biologist, master diver, advisor to Two Oceans Aquarium, member of the Ocean Artists Society, Fellow of International League of Conservation Writers shine through in this book, and you deserve to add to those accomplishments the accolades this book should reap."

Stories for Change

Do you think stories can affect change? Penguin Random House published an opinion piece of mine recently that explores this question:

With the recent Oscar success of the documentary film, My Octopus Teacher, writer and underwater photographer, Lynton Francois Burger, reflects on powerful storytelling as a catalyst in affecting change in our behaviour towards ocean life. Lynton is the author of the exhilarating novel, She Down There.

This is what I wrote ...

“AS WORLD OCEANS DAY APPROACHES on the 8th June, I am buoyed by a growing sense of optimism, like the rising exhalations of a scuba diver, which start as little bubbles but then join to become saucers of air, wobbling expectantly to the surface. I am seeing, for the first time since this UN-declared awareness day started, signs of a fundamental shift in consciousness towards life aquatic. Towards a new respect for the creatures who live in the big blue of our little marble in space. And good storytelling has everything to do with this ... Read the full article here.

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Canadian and UK Representation

I am looking for a new agent to represent me in Canada and the UK. If you're an agent who operates in either or both of these markets and think my work would be a good addition to your list, please email me

Lynton Francois Burger has had a lifelong love affair with the sea.  As a marine biologist, master diver and award-winning underwater photographer, Lynton writes about a world he knows intimately. He serves as an advisor to ocean-impact ventures in several countries, including the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town. Lynton is an inducted member of the Ocean Artists Society and a fellow of the International League of Conservation Writers. She Down There is his first novel.
Contact Lynton
Copyright © 2021 Lynton Francois Burger and Penguin Random House, All rights reserved.
Cover images courtesy of Jaques Kaiser, She Down There cover designer

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