Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Erik Larson, DEAD WAKE: THE LAST CROSSING OF THE LUSITANIA
Another historical page-turner by the author of *Devil in the White City*. Like that one, this book blends two related stories: that of the German U-boat commander and that of the Lusitania, including stories of the captain and some individual passengers (which I found fascinating). There's a kind of magic about the way Larson interweaves the two stories. I mean, we all know how it ends, right? But the alternating chapters mimic the feeling of watching the two vessels move closer and closer .... you can't put it down. What I liked most is the way Larson situates the sinking within several historical contexts--the recent Titanic disaster; the political machinations of WWI, with Britain desperately hoping the US would join in the war; President Wilson's personal life; the newspaper reports, etc. An intelligent, accessible read for history lovers!