Not since Diane Preston, Robert Ballard and J. Kent Layton have there been many in-depth books about the RMS Lusitania and her tragic demise. It’s true that a few “lightweight” books have come up over the last few years that touched on the Lusitania but that’s about it. The 100th anniversary of the tragedy is just around the corner and what better author to tackle this story and bring it to general audiences than Erik Larson. Larson illustrated his skills with the pen to the shipping enthusiasts when he tackled the Crippen Murder (which has tenuous ties to the RMS Empress of Ireland disaster). With his talent I was thrilled when Dead Wake was released. Larson does not disappoint. Readers who do not normally venture into nonfiction will enjoy Larson’s style of writing as it takes hold of them and doesn’t let go until the story’s conclusion. I will say that there is some wandering from the subject though and readers may get a little bogged down with too much detail. I personally love too much detail when it comes to crew background but not so much with what Larson dealt with. Overall it is worth a read and will remain a reference piece in my library.
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