If you had to pick five...?

N Alison

N Alison

Member
So I was wondering if you all had to pick five books on the sinking to read or suggest to others what books would they be? What would be your reasons behind them? What about the five worst books, what might they be and why?

A few I like:

ANTR
The Night Lives On
Gracie's The Truth about the Titanic
Titanic: End of a Dream
Titanic: An Illustrated History
 
Seumas

Seumas

Member
I prefer the more up-to-date material:

On A Sea of Glass
Report Into the Loss of the SS Titanic
On Board RMS Titanic: Memories of a Maiden Voyage
The Ship Magnificent
Titanic In Photographs

And as for bad or just bang average Titanic books, there are too many to mention !

In all honesty, out of the thousands of books published devoted to the Titanic, to date there are probably only about twenty five (or thereabouts) Titanic books that are actually worth reading.
 
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N Alison

N Alison

Member
I have not read any of those. When I searched my library system they did not have On a Sea of Glass.
 
Sam Brannigan

Sam Brannigan

Member
A Night To Remember - sparkling prose which catches that indefinable essence of my Titanic obsession.

The Ship Magnificent Volumes 1 & 2 - absolutely indispensable. An incredible achievement.

How to survive the Titanic or The Sinking of J. Bruce Ismay - an excellent read and it rounds out Ismay's character.

Harland & Wolff: Shipbuilders to the World 1861-1986 Quite a rare tome archiving the rise and fall of the great shipyard. Dry but highly recommended for afficionados of corporate biographies.

Titanic Voices - Memories from the fateful maiden voyage - beautiful constructed book bringing to the forefront the immediacy of the devastation experienced by those who suffered the disaster.
 
Sam Brannigan

Sam Brannigan

Member
I may get slated here but I find that while A Sea of Glass is a super reference book, and perfect for those hoping to increase their knowledge, I get far more out of the books and essays of researchers like Mark Chirnside and Paul Lee.
 
N Alison

N Alison

Member
I can't comment as I have yet to read it. I have heard some compare it to ANTR but as a more detailed, updated version. Not sure how true this description is though.
 
Sam Brannigan

Sam Brannigan

Member
I can't comment as I have yet to read it. I have heard some compare it to ANTR but as a more detailed, updated version. Not sure how true this description is though.
ANTR reads almost like a thriller. There's a swagger to Lord's prose, a filmic quality which drives the narrative, and also an uncanny knack for adding unnecessary but strangely compelling little details (fairies coming into land in Zurich I think sticks in my mind). A Sea of Glass is a much more "academic" read and i think that was the right approach - still a very good read but for me it's more of a reference resource whereas ANTR has a real sense of dash about it.
 
Sam Brannigan

Sam Brannigan

Member
...and of course ASOG has the benefit of pulling together a huge amount of research post-ANTR so it is obviously much more accurate.
 
Jason D. Tiller

Jason D. Tiller

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My top five would be:

On A Sea of Glass
"Titanic: The Ship Magnificent" Volumes 1 & 2 (both volumes have been indispensable to me recently, in the course of my research)
Anything by George Behe
Gilded Lives, Fateful Voyage
Report Into the Loss of the SS Titanic

"Titanic in Photographs" is also excellent for many unseen photos of Titanic. "Titanic: Triumph and Tragedy" is still a good read, for a 36 year old book. It should be available at most libraries.
 
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Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

Member
My top 5 would be (based on writing style, information contained and accuracy)
1. On A Sea Of Glass
2. Report into the Loss of the SS Titanic
3. Strangers on the Horizon
4. On Board th RMS Titanic
5. Guide to the Crew of the Titanic

The worst 5 IMO (There are so many, it is hard to choose. Some I have not bothered to read.)
1. Titanic: Sinking the Myths
2. Titanic Myths, Titanic Truths
3. A Titanic Myth
4. The Unsinkable
5. Titanic: The Ship that Never Sank?

And as for bad or just bang average Titanic books, there are too many to mention !
I would still like to know where Seumas places a certain recently released book that of which he bought the Kindle edition. (I would not blame him if he has mistakenly filed them with his collection of old Mickey Mouse comics ;) )
 
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Seumas

Seumas

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My top 5 would be (based on writing style, information contained and accuracy)
1. On A Sea Of Glass
2. Report into the Loss of the SS Titanic
3. Strangers on the Horizon
4. On Board th RMS Titanic
5. Guide to the Crew of the Titanic

The worst 5 IMO (There are so many, it is hard to choose. Some I have not bothered to read.)
1. Titanic: Sinking the Myths
2. Titanic Myths' Titanic Truths
3. A Titanic Myth
4. The Unsinkable
5. Titanic: The Ship that Never Sank?


I would still like to know where Seumas places a certain recently released book that of which he bought the Kindle edition. (I would not blame him if he has mistakenly filed them with his collection of old Mickey Mouse comics ;) )
Those Diana Bristow books were just horrible, horrible pieces of trash. Not worth the paper they were printed on. She supposedly spent some time in Hollywood during the early nineties, unsuccessfully trying to get herself a film deal for her pulp fiction rubbish.

I didn't actually buy the Kindle of Mr Juicier's book, just read the first few pages of the preview. The writing skill displayed was dreadful. However, in a roundabout way those of us who have read his various ridiculous theories and bombastic declarations can guess the bulk of the content.

On a positive note, I've mentioned this book a few times before, but I would recommend the late Michael Davie's often overlooked "Life and Death of a Legend". The most recent edition had edits and notes by first rate Titanic historian Dave Gittins.

It is not an in depth history of the disaster but rather a collection of thought-provoking essays on the subject including -
  • The legacy of the Titanic at H&W (written in the eighties when the yard was in decline),
  • The life and escape from the Titanic of Bruce Ismay (An even-handed approach to the subject not clouded by emotion),
  • Sir Rufus Isaacs and the Marconi Affair,
  • The character and motivations of Lord Mersey,
  • An introduction to the Californian affair for beginners (although Davie states Stanley Lord and Leslie Harrison's case out of a sense of fairness, he was nonetheless unconvinced by them)
 
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Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

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Those Diana Bristow books were just horrible, horrible pieces of trash. Not worth the paper they were printed on. She supposedly spent some time in Hollywood during the early nineties, unsuccessfully trying to get herself a film deal for her pulp fiction rubbish.
I agree completely. All she did was collate information from various other sources and "adjust" facts to put forward her moronic theories. As you say, not worth the paper that the book is printed on.
 
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Jason D. Tiller

Jason D. Tiller

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Moderator
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A few other books that I consider to be the worst:

"Riddle of the Titanic"
"Total Titanic"
"Unsinkable"
"Her Name: Titanic"
"Ghosts of the Titanic"
 
Seumas

Seumas

Member
I've read a few stories about the bloke who wrote "Unsinkable", he wasn't exactly Mr Popular with many in the Titanic community, so I gather !

On the other side of the coin, George Behe, whom Jason mentioned earlier, is regarded as one of the great gentlemen of the Titanic community, and he certainly has written some powerful, thought-provoking articles and monographs regarding the Titanic.
 
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Sam Brannigan

Sam Brannigan

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I agree completely. All she did was collate information from various other sources and "adjust" facts to put forward her moronic theories. As you say, not worth the paper that the book is printed on.
In fairness, I have seen posts in her defence on this forum by Parks and Inger, so there must be worth in some of her work.
 
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