On May 1, 1915, with World War I 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. 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. As the Lusitania made her 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. 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.
This is a used copy in good condition with general wear, including light creasing on the covers.
By Erik Larson. Paperback. 430 pages. Published by Crown, 2016.