Phillip Finch: One of the World’s Best Non-Fiction Authors

Phillip Finch was a novelist, journalist, and the occasional screenwriter, but he was mostly known for his books, of which he published 14 - a mixture of fiction and non-fiction. Whenever he had some spare time, which was not that often due to his other commitments, Finch liked to go cave diving. Unfortunately, Phillip passed away in 2012 after a battle with cancer, but he can be proud of what he achieved in his 63 years on this planet.

A Very Accomplished Author

Although Finch wrote some fiction books, he much preferred to write books that were based on true stories. The book that he is probably most well known for is Fatal Flaw, which was a book where he took a look at the case of William Zeigler, a man who many believe was wrongfully charged with the murder of his wife, in-laws, and another man. Finch was so dedicated to this case that he decided to make the book available for free on his website.

Other books of his that have gone on to do extremely well include:

  • Diving into Darkness: A True Story
  • Devil's Keep
  • In a Place Dark and Secret
  • God, Guts and Guns
  • Raising the Dead: A True Story of Death and Survival

If you are looking for some top reading material, then you will definitely not be disappointed if you take the time to read any of the books that we just mentioned above.

Raising the Dead

In our opinion, Finch’s best work was Raising the Dead, which is a book that tells the true story of Dave Shaw and Don Shirley, two experienced cave divers, who travelled to Bushman’s Hole in South Africa’s Northern Cape province to retrieve the body of Deon Dreyer, a 20-year-old who had drowned diving in the hole a decade earlier.

However, tragedy struck when Dreyer’s body started to float - Shaw had been told by experts that the body would not be buoyant since the visible parts were a skeleton, but in his wetsuit, Dreyers body had turned into adipocere, a soap-like substance that floats. When the body started to unexpectedly float, Shaw panicked and the body bag lines and wires from his underwater lights become entangled, and he drowned trying to free himself. Three days later, both bodies were pulled up to surface as the team were retrieving their equipment. So, although he died, Shaw still managed to achieve what he set out to do - retrieve Dreyer’s body from the bottom of the hole.

What about Shirley, Shaw’s close friend? Well, he nearly died as well, but just about managed to escape with his life. However, he has been left with some permanent damage that has left him with impaired balance. Finch tells the story of this tragic rescue mission like no other, so we recommend you give it a read if you are looking for compelling and dramatic story of heroism, friendship, ambition, and coming to terms with a tragedy and loss.

Partial to a Bit of Gambling

Cave divers like Shaw and Shirley take a gamble whenever they are exploring an underwater cave, but it is a risk that they are willing to take since it fills them with adrenaline and makes them feel alive. They know it is a dangerous sport, but they just cannot imagine their lives without it, and having the honour of seeing places that very few humans have. You might roll your eyes when hearing about incidents like the ones above and tell yourself that they brought their demise upon themselves, but unless you have experienced cave diving yourself, it is hard to judge.

When they are not getting their adrenaline from diving hundreds of metres underground, many cave divers like to do a spot of online gambling. They gamble with their lives, so why not do a bit of real money online gambling? Getting into cave diving is expensive because you need extensive training and a variety of equipment, all of which does not come cheap. The total cost is estimated to run anywhere between $7000-12000, so maybe gambling online UK is a way for them to fund their hobby. At least when they are UK online gambling at the best online gambling sites the worse thing that can happen to them is that they lose some money.