Monday, September 7, 2009

The Lusitania Story

By Mitch Peeke, Mitch Peeke & Mitch Peeke Page
192 pages US Naval Institute Press 978-1591144731
The 1915 sinking of the Cunard liner Lusitania by German submarines sparked a firestorm of demand for U.S. intervention in World War I. Attacked without warning; the ship went down in twenty minutes with more than 1,100 passengers lost including 124 Americans. This riveting account, written by leading members of the Lusitania Historical Society in cooperation with the owner of the ship's wreckage, provides a concise history of the Lusitania's construction, operational record, and new theories on how and why it sank so quickly. The authors capture the mystique of the famous liner--from her great achievements and groundbreaking technical advances to the rumors of a treasure cargo and consequences of fate. Illustrated with contemporary images of the wreck today, this well-researched volume will be enjoyed by those steeped in the Lusitania story and those exploring this pivotal event for the first time.
At first I was skeptical on how this book would evolve when I found that the authors actually “owned” the wreck of Lusitania. However I was not disappointed in what turned out to be an enjoyable read of a subject I had never read in depth before.
A cause of public outrage in 1915 the act was used a propaganda by both the Germans and the British with the latter denying for many years after the war Lusitania was carrying ammunition, desperately needed on the Western Front.
The narrative is well put together and flows well. The one surprise I had was the retention of British spellings from the original of this book originally published by Pen and Sword Books. Apart from that, the book is recommended.

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