It's a good overview, Jesse, and provides a readily available source for Lightoller's life. The author has worked cooperatively with the Lightoller family, and has been given good access to their resources. If possible, get the second edition published as Titanic Voyager - it is far more copiously illustrated.
The book does draw very heavily on Lightoller's own memoirs for the period of his life up until he left the merchant service. It also extends well beyond the period covered in Titanic and Other Ships, right up until the end of Lightoller's life. The author has access to some interesting sources, particularly regarding Dunkirk and the alternate view of some of war expolits.
The work is perhaps a little bit light in actual dates, and there are some periods of his career that are overlooked or skimped over - details of his early WSL career beyond the Oceanic and the Suevic, for example. The period between the Titanic and rejoining the Oceanic is abridged (as Lightoller abridged it in his own memoirs - neither discusses his stint back on the Majestic). There are also some errors in the family background given, as revealed in research by my friend and colleague Dr Monika Simon. An ancestor is incorrectly identified, and his father's second wife died before his father's departure to NZ, contrary to what is stated in the book. I'm also a fan of footnoting and referencing, but that's a personal preference. You are often left wondering what Stenson's specific source was.
For an overview of this remarkable man's career, it is currently the source. It is advisable to read it in conjunction with TAOS. One does get the impression from this book that everything Lightoller did was the biggest, most impressive, the first, etc etc - some people I know have reacted adversely to this. The man's humility and humour in TAOS tends to restore the balance.
Pat Winship might have some good observations to make on the book. It's certainly worth a read! As a side note, I'm going sailing today on Sydney Harbour - I'll be flying past Fort Denison, site of the escapades that Scott refers to above. I'll certainly be thinking of what he and his cohorts got up to just over 103 years ago one October night!
I would pretty much concur with everything Inger said about the book - a great overvue of its strengths and weaknesses.
as this is one of those books with multiple, if slight, title changes, for different editions, here is what was released when:
“Lights”. The Odyssey of C.H. Lightoller. this was the title of the 1st British printing in 1984.
The Odyssey of C.H. Lightoller. this was the title of the 1st American printing, also in 1984.
Titanic Voyager. The Odyssey of C.H. Lightoller. this was the title for the revised edition, released in 1998. as Inger pointed out, it is the best one of the three, because the text has been augmented with a huge number of photographs, many from the Ligholler family archives.
Okay, now everybody that's heard me say this ad nauseam, don't look. Here's how to get hold of a copy of Lightoller's autobiography.
Purchase a copy. The hardcover goes from $200 to 1,100, or thereabouts, if it's autographed. The paperback sells for $70-$100. Check eBay; they turn up there fairly regularly.
Visit a library that owns it and photocopy it. The closest ones to your location are New York Public Library, and the US Naval Academy Library at Annapolis. This is not recommended, as they tend to be fragile if they've been used a lot.
Have your local library borrow the Library of Congress's microfilm, or you can purchase a copy of the microfilm from LC if the local Interlibrary Services staff refuses to help. It costs around $42.00 as I recall.
TAOS is legally posted on Project Gutenberg's Australian server. It is illegal for people in the US, or any country which does not have a "death of the author plus fifty years" rule for public domain to view it or download it. (FYI, in the US, public domain materials are those published before 1923. In most of the rest of the world, it's "death of the author plus seventy years.") However, it's highly unlikely that anyone will perform legal whackage on you if you do either of those things. That's usually reserved for people who do too many downloads from kazaa.com. The rules are clearly stated on Project Gutenberg's website.
That's okay, Jesse! Anyhow, enjoy Voyager. It's a very entertaining book and the pictures alone are worth the price. I am very partial to the one of Lights in his first RNR uniform. He looks as though one of his female relatives has forced him to get dressed up in all his finery and sit for the photographer!
I'm Having THrouble Finding Titanic and Other Ships. Do you know any possible spot where i could find it? tried abes, booksearch,Etc and nothing ever comes for it. and I'd realy like a copy since it's a survivor copy and and i treasure those book most, as it seems to me your getting 1st hand info from them and not someones iterpretation of it.
Lightoller's Titanic and Other Ships is a very rare book in both of its editions. Check out the information on Michael Tennaro's titanicbooksite.com: Charles H. Lightoller
As you're in the US, you can probably at least borrow a copy to read through an inter-library loan. Standby for Pat's advice how to organise this.
In the meantime, don't stop looking. Some books take years to find, others fall into your lap at the first opportunity. Just make sure you're not looking in the wrong direction when another copy of T&OS pops up next.
(The full text of T&OS is also available through Project Gutenberg at http://gutenberg.net.au/plusfifty.html. Please note that owing to different copyright laws T&OS is in the public domain in Australia, but it's still in copyright in the US. You can see Pat's post on this at: Titanic and Other Ships. Anyone wanting to read it that way should check their local copyright laws first.)
Fi, I posted all the current options for obtaining TAOS a little ways up on this thread. One possibility I neglected to mention is to have an Aussie or Canadian friend legally download it, put it on a CD ROM and send it to you.
Your best option for obtaining an actual copy of the book that you can hold in your hand is to watch eBay for a copy of the paperback
I am on search for the relatives of Charles Herbert Lightoller. Does anybody knows where they lives? I want to use a part of a speech of Lightoller and so I need the permission of the relatives. Has anybody an idea where I could find them?
I Was Wondering Since It's Been Mentioned before how one can obtain a copy of TAOS Through inter-library loan System. I Know none of The libraries where I Live Have the Book, or microfilms of it, if they did I would have borrowed the book by now.
Having Someone DL to CD from Canada or Australia is out, as I don't know anyone from either of those countries, unless someone here wants to do it for me.