June 2, 2016

Dead Wake by Erik Larson - Review

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: March 22, 2016
Number of pages: 480
Genre: History

From the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania

On May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were surprisingly at ease, even though Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds”—the fastest liner then in service—and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack.

Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger’s U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small—hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more—all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history.

It is a story that many of us think we know but don’t, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour and suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope to President Woodrow Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love.

Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster whose intimate details and true meaning have long been obscured by history.

What did I think of this book:
This was an enjoyable book about the story of the Lusitania. I knew the bare bones of the story of this famous ship but after reading this book I know a lot more. This author has done his research and it shows in his writing. His writing style was very easy to read which is good for a non-fiction book. You can not happen to feel bad for all the victims in this tragic event. He has a way of putting you on the edge of your seat as you are reading along. I can not imagine what it was like to have to go through this. I will be enjoying the rest of the books written by this author. 

About the author:
Erik Larson is a writer, journalist and novelist. Nominated for a Pulitzer prize for investigative journalism on The Wall Street Journal, he has taught non-fiction writing at San Francisco State and Johns Hopkins.
Photo from Goodreads.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Angela for the intro & review of Dead Wake. My hub enjoys reading this genre. I'll need to buy him a copy.