Reader reviews and comments on Lusitania, plus links to write your own review.

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Triumph, Tragedy, and the End of the Edwardian Age

by Greg King, Penny Wilson

Lusitania by Greg King, Penny Wilson X
Lusitania by Greg King, Penny Wilson
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2015, 400 pages
    Apr 2016, 416 pages


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There are currently 22 reader reviews for Lusitania
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Alyce T. (San Antonio, TX)

This is a scholarly work by Greg King and Penny Wilson who have done a marvelous job of telling us about this famous ship. They did an in depth study on the passengers who were aboard including what their lives were like before the sailing, how they spent their days on sea. and what transpired after the tragedy.
Their descriptions of the rooms, salons and public rooms give the reader an insight into sailing on a luxury liner. We feel like we were there enjoying the pampering, activities and lavish meals. After the sinking we also experience the waterlogged struggles.

Hopefully this book will clear up a lot of misconceptions and myths concerning the event. We are privy to the analyzing and finger pointer that goes along with a tragedy. Safety lessons are to learned here. I enjoyed reading every page.
Joni W. (Nappanee, IN)

Lusitania: Triumph, Tragedy, and the End of the Edwardian Age
Excellent coverage of a true tragedy. Despite the warning printed in the newspapers, most people still sailed thinking they would be protected by their captain and their government and instead were betrayed by both.
I especially appreciated the listing of all passengers included in the beginning of the book. It made it much easier to follow their stories throughout the book.
The authors gave us the human side of the tragedy.
Marie D. (Waretown, NJ)

The Lusitania: A voyage to hell...
The Lusitania by Greg King and Penny Wilson

The tragic story is told in suspenseful and riveting detail. The reader, as an unbooked passenger, observes from a safe distance as the disaster plays out day by day -- while helpless to intervene!

World opinion at the time supported the belief that it was a German submarine torpedo which brought this great ship down. There is still no positive conclusion whether the submarine had fired one torpedo or two! Was the second explosion, described by survivors, a torpedo, or was it the explosion of the munitions stored secretly on the ship? Or, are we to believe the submarine captain who stated that he had fired only one torpedo?

This thorough investigation and compilation of facts, interviews, and research of the events by the authors reveal many errors of judgment, and actual malfeasance of government agencies, as well as the lack of preparedness of the captain and crew. The deplorable lack of functioning rowboats and the reality that passengers and crew had no knowledge of basic safety instructions and procedure is hard to comprehend.

The ship was traveling into a war zone; Germany had placed an ad in the New York papers warning of the presence of its U-Boats off the Irish coast; and still this ship sailed into harm's way, taking the lives of 1,198 men, women and children. Some 800 bodies were never recovered. There were 768 passengers and crew who survived, some of whom would cope with their injuries or nightmares for the rest of their lives.

Along with all the tragic elements in this book, there are many inspiring accounts of the kindness and generosity of those brave and courageous passengers who helped other passengers too traumatized to cope.
Anita S. (Boynton Beach, FL)

This book is amazing. I knew just a little about the sinking of the Lusitania and after reading this book I feel as if I were there on the ship. The rich details and tremendous research that obviously went into writing this book make for great reading. The authors describe the lives of the passengers and a history of that era and it is written In a clear and extremely interesting story. The authors describe how the war between England and Germany, the actions of the British Admiralty, the Cunard Line and the captain of the ship, Turner, all contributed to the sinking. The passengers who were aware of the danger were so naive to believe that nothing would happen to them. They were a product of that Era and the authors call it hubris. I really liked the descriptions of the lives of the passengers and of the Lusitania. While I was reading the chapter just before the torpedoes were released I experienced a terrible feeling of dread. The descriptions of the sinking and what was happening on the ship was truly frightening. I have never read a book before where I felt that it was happening to me. This book really is remarkable. I think everyone should read it to know what actually happened 100 years ago.
Power Reviewer
Kristen H. (Hagerstown, MD)

Well Researched and Written
Very well researched book. Thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I had read about the Lusitania as a student in school but like most history books in school you only get a little bit of actual history so this book was very intriguing. Would recommend it for book clubs, history lovers and even to be used as a reading for history classes.
Mary S. (Bow, NH)

Loved it, wish it had photos
Usually when reading an advance copy, you're essentially reading the final version. Not so with Lusitania, as the 8 page photo insert was missing and I really missed it. Other than that minor glitch, this was a great read. The authors did their research and wove in interesting tidbits about the people on board the ship. Further, they presented illuminating information about the sinking - making it not easy for the reader to draw a conclusion about whether the ship was used as bait to draw the US into WWI. My only complaint (and it is a minor one) is that they covered so many passengers that at the end, I got many of the names jumbled and had to keep referring to the provided index of passengers. It made for jumpy reading in that one bit, while the rest of the book read almost like a novel. I highly recommend this book to anyone. You do not have to be a history buff to enjoy it.
Rosanne J. (Beaverton, OR)

Excellent Review of History
I thoroughly enjoyed this retelling of the sinking of the Lusitania. The book puts the reader back into the time period and when reading of the sinking itself, I felt like I was there. The details were amazing. I got confused keeping track of all the different passengers, so the Cast of Characters was helpful. Anyone interested in World War 1 history will likely fine this a "good read".
Darshell S. (Warwick, RI)

Move over Titanic!
Well written account of the tragedy of the sinking of the Lusitania. Most people know all about the Titanic but little or nothing about the Lusitania. This book may well change that! An engrossing look at the time period, people, and events surrounding the sinking of the Lusitania. A great nonfiction read with a fiction feel. I recommend this book to anyone interested in history or just a wanting to read a great story. I will definitely recommend it at my library! Darshell Librarian RI
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