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P. J. Capelotti (Pete Shaw)

Dr. P.J. Capelotti is an archaeologist and writer/editor of more than a dozen non-fiction histories. His research has taken him from the Equator to the Arctic, from Indonesia to Svalbard and Franz Josef Land and twice to the North Pole. He earned B.A. (1983) and M.A. (Phi Kappa Phi, 1989) degrees in history from the University of Rhode Island, and an M.A. (1994) and Ph.D.(1996) in anthropology from Rutgers University, pioneering areas of polar and aerospace archaeology. He teaches archaeology and American studies at Penn State University, Abington College, in Abington, Pennsylvania, where he is Associate Professor of Anthropology.

He served for twenty-four years in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve, retiring in 2012 at the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer. Recalled to active duty after 9/11, he wrote the history of Coast Guard operations on and after 9/11 and was decorated with the Meritorious Service Medal. Recalled again in September 2005, he documented the Service’s response to hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Ike, and, in 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, when he also served as Command Master Chief of the Incident Command Post in Mobile, Alabama, and received the Coast Guard Commendation Medal.

Capelotti has twice received the Best Book of the Year from the Foundation for Coast Guard History, for Rogue Wave: The U.S. Coast Guard on and after 9/11(GPO 2003), and Life and Death on the Greenland Patrol, 1942 (Florida 2005). His latest book is Shipwreck at Cape Flora: The expeditions of Benjamin Leigh Smith, England’s forgotten Arctic explorer (Calgary 2013).

He is currently at work on a history of the American exploration of Franz Josef Land.


Shaw is a master of the mystery adventure. Nautilus is an amazing tale filled with enigmas, with riddles and dark mysteries. Truly a fascinating read.

—Clive Cussler

Pete Shaw in his exciting new novel Nautilus, set primarily in Arctic Svalbard, skillfully weaves a fascinating tale of undersea archeological intrigue, treachery, and possibility. Written on the premise that Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas and The Mysterious Island were actually journals, the book claims there was an aftermath to the events reported – i.e. that both the ageless Captain Nemo and the submarine Nautilus survived, with significant implications for mankind that have extended well into the 21st century. I found the book almost impossible to put down and it certainly left me wondering, ‘Could it be possible…?’

—Captain Alfred S. McLaren, USN (Ret.), Ph.D., President, The American Polar Society, former President, The Explorers Club, Senior Pilot of the revolutionary deep-diving Super Aviator submersible, and former Commanding Officer, USS Queenfish (SSN-651)


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