Blog | Release of Updated “Behind the Dolphin Smile”

Release of Updated “Behind the Dolphin Smile”

February 28, 2012 by Mark Palmer, Save Japan Dolphins


By Mark J. Palmer
Associate Director
International Marine Mammal Project
Earth Island Institute

Ric O’Barry’s classic book (with co-author Keith Coulbourn) of his experiences with Flipper and his change of heart to protect dolphins from captivity, Behind the Dolphin Smile, is back in print again.  This new edition features a new Foreward by author Susan Casey and an updated Preface about The Cove documentary.

Behind the Dolphin Smile is an entertaining tale of how Ric got his start in training dolphins and orcas, his experiences in Hollywood as trainer for the Flipper television series and shark wrangler for Thunderball, and his environmental awakening that led to a career of advocating for wild dolphins and rehabilitating many captive dolphins to return them to the ocean where they belong.

Susan Casey is the bestselling author of The Wave and The Devil’s Teeth as well as editor of O Magazine.  Having worked with Ric, her Foreward paints a fascinating portrait of the world’s leading dolphin activist.

Ric has also supplied a new Preface to this edition, discussing the efforts to protect dolphins in Japan and the epic Oscar-winning Cove documentary that has revealed to the world the dangers to dolphins from the captive industry and the Japanese Fisheries Agency.

Kirkus called Behind the Dolphin Smile: “An engaging memoir… a refreshing down-to-earth look at men (and) dolphins.”  People Magazine noted: “Flipper’s ex-trainer wants his favorite mammals to swim with the fishes.”  “To call this book riveting is an understatement,” said Australia Times.  “It is absolutely fascinating.”

The new edition is in paperback, published by Earth Aware Editions of San Rafael, CA.  It is available in bookstores and online, or you can order it direct from our friends at EcoJoia:   

A portion of the profits will be used for Ric’s Save Japan Dolphins Campaign and Dolphin Project.



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