J. Kent Layton's Lusitania: An Illustrated Biography of the Ship of Splendor

You are both correct, gentlemen. I've been hard at work over the past couple of days. My first shipment came in on... what day is this? Uh... Monday, I believe (that's right - I was surprised because it was the local postal holiday). Yesterday and Wednesday were spent getting all of the pre-orders put together and shipped out, and I tried to send out update e-mails to all pre-order customers as I went. If you didn't get a confirmation update by e-mail, though, don't stress - it IS in the post.

To the best of my knowledge, this shipment is the only shipment of books available from the US at this time; we've beaten all of the retailers that I know of. That is an incredible feat on the part of the people over at Amberley to get them to me so quickly, and it's greatly appreciated.

Below, I'm going to include a couple of links so that people can order the book. Once this batch is gone, it may take some time to replenish, so orders will be fulfilled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Here are the links:



I hope that everyone's books arrive in good shape; I've taken special precautions in packing them. I also hope that when everyone's copies come in, you enjoy the book as thoroughly as I enjoyed putting it together.

Again, a special shout-out to Mike Poirier and Jim Kalafus for their assistance with content and an excellent introduction, as well as to artist Tom Lear for his fantastic artwork.

Take care, everyone!
I got my copy last Thursday. An outstanding work and about the only thing I can think of which would improve it would be to have a section where the complete deck plans are presented in a larger format.
I have finally been able to drag myself away from "that" book. The photographs are realy good as is the Tom Lear art. The shot of the Lusi on the bottom has already got my mind to work thinking of other POVs of that scene.

I agree with Michael S about the plans but maybe Kent has further ideas for the plans?

Well worth the wait,

>>I agree with Michael S about the plans but maybe Kent has further ideas for the plans?<<

Perhaps the general plans should be offered in a book of their own. The revised version in the current book looks like it was done in the same style at Bruce Beveridge's Titanic plans, complete with identification of each of the spaces and cabins. It's great to see them but IMO, researchers and serious enthusiasts need to have something large enough to refer to which doesn't require the use of a magnifying glass.

There are some enlargements of sections of these plans and they're helpful for understanding both the layout and construction of the ship.
Martin & Michael,

Thanks for your kind words regarding the book. I'm glad you enjoyed it! I've been a bit busy over here with the next book, so I haven't been checking this thread as often as I should.

Regarding the size of the plans, I am going to release these plans in large printed scale, like the Beveridge plans, for serious research. I am going to start with 1/350-scale first, and move up into other scales if I get enough requests for them. This should come to fruition shortly - but I've been so swamped with these other projects that I haven't had time to get to them.

There is also a "plan" to show the plans in a larger format for the second printing of this book, but the plan is a little rough at the moment and hasn't been "pinned down". I hope this helps. Take care, everyone!
I don't need to get a copy from a second printing but a large scale presentation is something I could use. Perhaps in a book form all it's own, which would make it easier to carry around. I'd buy them either way since they are long overdue!

You're quite right, they are LONG overdue. Those old Engineering plans were pretty good, but they simply weren't detailed enough for serious research. In the 104 years since they were putting the finishing touches on the Lusitania, I've never seen anyone attempt anything like this. Although I'm currently swamped at finishing up The Edwardian Superliners and two other book projects, I promise that getting these plans into large scale for everyone is high on my priority list, and I'll keep everyone posted.

Take care, everyone!
>>I promise that getting these plans into large scale for everyone is high on my priority list, and I'll keep everyone posted.<<

I'll be looking forward to that, and any other book projects which come to fruition. What I have from your pen has been a goldmine of information.

I've been so busy that I haven't been checking all the message boards as frequently as I should be. :/ I apologize for not having found your comments before. Thank you very much for your compliment - I'm glad that these books can be enjoyed by everyone from the relative novice to the most enthusiastic researchers and enthusiasts out there.

As an aside, I've just put up pre-orders for my new book, The Edwardian Superliners: A Trio of Trios through my site, TMB Studios, which contains information on the Lusitania, as well as Olympic, Titanic, Britannic, and the other greats of the period. It's going to be a tremendous step forward in photographs and illustrative material - not to mention print and paper quality - from the old 2005 and 2009 volumes.

And then there are two more as-yet unfinished projects... but more on those soon.

>>Keep it up at this rate, Kent, and you'll be contributing to what should be a banner year for ocean liner history books.<<

These two new volumes will be released within the next year, probably on the early side of that. And that, I'm afraid, is about all I can say at this point.
>>You know where we are when you can say more!<<


Well, in harmony with that ...

I just wanted to let everyone know where I've been and what has been happening with the aforementioned book projects. With the Lusitania book in print for about a year now, I've been focused on completing my other projects. The first is The Edwardian Superliners, which discusses the Lusitania, Titanic, and many other ships. This book is very close to being ready ... its actual publication date is dependent on the publisher, but it's ready to go whenever they wish to proceed. It's enormous, and lavishly illustrated with many never-before-published images.

I have also completed a smaller softcover work on general maritime history, for Shire Books, entitled: Transatlantic Liners. Although small in size, this book is printed in full color, and anyone familiar with Shire's quality and layout should appreciate just how exciting this book will be. It is due for release late winter-early spring, again, contingent on the publisher's schedule.

Finally, and most excitingly, I have just completed a new volume entitled On A Sea of Glass. In this endeavor, I was joined by Tad Fitch and Bill Wormstedt, and together we labored to produce the most detailed "one-stop" volume on he Titanic produced to date. It also seems to be the most scholarly narrative ever produced, with some 2,600 end notes to original source material or further explanations. George Behe has kindly proof-read the volume and contributed an introduction on the subject. The manuscript is now with the publisher and should be off to layout shortly, I would hope.

Well, I've been pretty quiet lately, so I just wanted to let everyone know what I've been up to, as I promised I would back in March! Take care, everyone!