In this exceptionally well-paced and engagingly written book Erik Larson recounts the last crossing (and the sinking) of the Lusitania. Larsen draws on his extensive research to bring individual ship passengers to life and expertly builds tension as the U-boat and the ocean liner draw ever closer. He seamlessly weaves the personal, the political, and the military together, giving the reader a clear sense of the many factors that together lead to this calamity. History is not inevitable and "Dead Wake" makes that clear--the fatal torpedo hit could have easily been a near miss if just one of dozens of small moments had gone differently. Thanks to Larsen's skillful narrative style "Dead Wake" will appeal to history buffs and fiction lovers alike. Audio book listeners who struggle to find engaging historical nonfiction should check out this title! It is easily one of the best nonfiction audio books I’ve ever listened to; I frequently found myself having “driveway moments” where I would sit in my car, unwilling to go inside until I heard what happened next.

If this sounds good, you may also like Wolf of the deep: Raphael Semmes and the notorious Confederate raider CSS Alabama by Stephen R. Fox or Liar, temptress, soldier, spy: four women undercover in the Civil War by Karen Abbott.  

Recommended by Ida Zago

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