Monday, March 19, 2012

Review: Voyagers of the Titanic by Richard Davenport-Hines

With the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, I jumped at the chance to learn more about the people whose lives were forever changed by it. I began the book eager to get information and believe me that it what you  get. At times, too much information and a lot of skimming through some chapters. Describing the first class passengers actually got a bit boring, as they were essentially the same. Most of the men who traveled were interested in the speed of the ship; most of the women were interested in the monied guests and gossip aboard the ship. The second class passengers were more interesting, with most of them being fairly well off financially, just not willing to spend the extra for first class. From all accounts, whether you were first, second or third class, the accommodations aboard the Titanic were the best that any ship to date had to offer. The most interesting of all passengers were t hose traveling third class. From all over Europe they came to sail to America and better lives (or they had hoped). Most had family in America who had scrimped and saved to get the rest of the family over the Atlantic and into the land of hope. As the author starts describing the lives of the third class, he also begins to tell the reader that most of these people, did not make it. After I read a particularly sad story of a young girl, only five and  a survivor, that remembered being lowered into the lifeboat with her mother and younger sisters, while her father and two brothers stood bravely on deck saying their goodbyes..I had to close the book. I have not picked it up since. I did not even skip to the end to see how the book turned out, we all know how it turned out. I do recommend this book to anyone who wants to know who was aboard the ship and why. It was all very interesting and all very tragic.