Was anyone else incredibly disappointed with this book

Aug 15, 2005
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Darwen, United Kingdom
Having heard of Robertson's premonition of the disaster many years ago, I ordered the book from WH Smiths earlier this year.

Having paid £11.95 for the publication, I was immediately disappointed at the fact that it resembled a synopsis book of Steinbeck's "Of Mice And Men".
Then, having read the most gripping part of the story (the first two chapters), I realised that this book was nothing more than a blatant insult towards God (something which is tackled in far better detail and fact [I'm an Atheist] in my own novel) with an incredibly poor story as the backdrop.

Did anyone else feel this way?
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
What I've seen didn't go over quite that badly with me, but I'm mindful of the fact that what "Futility" is, is a typical late 19th century pulp fiction morality tale. Not particularly well written, but the same could be said for a lot of that genre. While certain aspects can be seen as prescient, it's been way over rated as a predictor of Titanic.
 
Nov 12, 2000
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I'm curious why you think the book is a blatant insult towards God? I've read many reactions to this book, but yours is the first time that comment has come up.

But then it is shocking to me that at the dawn of the 21st century, we have seen a rise of religious extremism that hasn't occurred since probably the Crusades. And I'm not just talking about Islamic countries either.

As far as it being a poor story, I think it is closer to the truth to say it has not held up well over time. One must remember, Robertson was a moderately successful writer in HIS time, which means that his style of writing was popular then.

As Mike pointed out, the Titanic prediction aspect of the book has been blown way out of proportion over the last few decades. One of the best critiques of Robertson's book was by Martin Gardner, called Wreck of the Titanic Foretold?. I highly recommend it as he goes into both the similarities and the differences between the novel and the real event in depth.

best, Michael (TheManInBlack) T
 

Senan Molony

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Jan 30, 2004
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quote:

But then it is shocking to me that at the dawn of the 21st century, we have seen a rise of religious extremism that hasn't occurred since probably the Crusades. And I'm not just talking about Islamic countries either.
Well, that's you off the Florida voters' register, Mike...

.​
 

JMGraber

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Apr 22, 2012
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I was, but for different reasons. I assumed this book would be about the sinking of a great ocean liner sinking like the Titanic did and all the problems with te evacuation the Titanic would suffer. Instead, the ship sinks less than half-way into the book in about 3 or 4 paragraphs there were barely and survivors. I have not yet read the past of it because its boring.
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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The problem with Futility is that it's impossible to read it without drawing as many comparisons as possible to the Titanic. If it could be read with an open mind, one might take a different view on it (Robertson, it could be fairly said, is only really remembered for this work and its connection to the Titanic, he was not a particularly successful author in the era of the great and successful authors), but as a Titanic enthusiast, that's not possible.

Cheers,
Adam.
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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Yeah, for every example which is comparable to the Titanic, there's perhaps half a dozen that are not.

Cheers,
Adam.
 

Laura Jay

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Dec 3, 2012
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Glad I didn't read the book you're talking about then. I imagine it was easier to read it before Titanic sank, but after you keep drawing parallels or whatever, the most famous shipwreck in history just obliterates every other tale of shipwrecks from your mind for however long.