- Hardcover: 336 pages
- Publisher: Atlantic Books; Main edition (7 April 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1782397795
- ISBN-13: 978-1782397793
- Product Dimensions: 15.8 x 3 x 21.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 90,921 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Midnight Watch: A Gripping Novel of the SS Californian, the Ship That Failed to Aid the Sinking Titanic Hardcover – 7 Apr 2016
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Historical fiction at its best. - Antonia Senior, The Times
Passionate and gripping. - Financial Times
David Dyer turns the sparse record of why the Californian did not go to the aid of the sinking Titanic into a gripping novel of flawed people, missed chances, and suspense. - Charlotte Rogan, author of The Lifeboat
In The Midnight Watch, David Dyer makes the story of the sinking of the Titanic brand new-he even makes you wonder what will happen. This superb novel, the disaster we think we know, comes freshly alive through its unfamiliar point of view, and David Dyer's vivid eye for the right and telling detail. - Peter Nichols, bestselling author of The Rocks
A fascinating novel. David Dyer has captured all the drama and emotion of the Titanic disaster from an intriguing new perspective. Clever, gripping and utterly compelling. Historical fiction at its very best. - Hazel Gaynor, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Girl Who Came Home and A Memory of Violets
The Midnight Watch opens fresh portals on a monumental event with all the tools of strong historical fiction: deep research, methodical recreations, and an array of memorable perspectives. Dyer proves why sometimes it takes fiction to answer history's question of "How could this happen?" A compelling read and a journey through this moment in time. - Matthew Pearl, New York Times bestselling author of The Dante Club and The Last Bookaneer
David Dyer has achieved that very rare thing, an historical account of a major event involving impeccable research and detail, yet one that is a novel first and foremost. The Midnight Watch is a compelling read, insightful, compassionate and deeply moving from start to finish. - Debra Adelaide, author of THE HOUSEHOLD GUIDE TO DYING
[A] hugely impressive debut novel, a fascinating piece of historical fiction - RTE Guide
Based on true events, The Midnight Watch is at once a heart-stopping mystery and a deeply knowing novel – about the frailty of men, the strength of women, the capriciousness of fate and the price of loyalty. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.See all Product description
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Top Customer Reviews
This novel tells the story of the Californian and her captain Stanley Lord, no spoiler I don't think as history documents his part well.
And so I loved this book. I accepted it as an historical, fictional account of a controversial aspect of the whole Titanic phenomenon. The details were known and familiar to me. So I responded to the authenticity of the research. I enjoyed the fact that the writer has placed it within a broader social context as it is sometimes too easy to look at an historical event in isolation. I took delight too in the human aspects of this fiction; we have the public perception of many of the persons featured in this history but the writer attempts to burrow beneath that and encourages us to see them as people, human beings with their strengths and their weaknesses. All this, too, from a debut novel? Can it get any better?
But…. (There had to be a but didn't there?) How much appeal will this book have to anyone with scant knowledge of the Titanic? Does the book have enough momentum to keep an indifferent reader satisfied? I’m not sure it does. Publication date is due to coincide with the anniversary of the sinking, that may propel it along a little further. But if I am to be objectively honest I doubt this book has a wide appeal. It is very well written and I think Titanic ‘fans’ (for want of a better word) will lap it up but beyond that I fear appeal and interest will be limited. I would love to be wrong though. And I hope I am.
Whizz received a copy of this book and shared the review with Breakaway Reviewers.
I first read about David Dyer’s new novel on Carrie’s Book Reviews blog a few weeks ago and immediately pre-ordered it. Dyer has taken a look at the Titanic story from a different angle; the focus of this novel is on the actions of the nearest ship to Titanic when she hit the iceberg, the Californian. I’d heard about this before reading the novel but Dyer’s meticulous research mixed with his educated interpretations of what might have taken place that nice, add an extra dimension for me. It put a much more human face on the men who were working the midnight watch that fateful night. I was surprised to find I had some sympathy for the Second Officer, as he panicked and was scared to disturb the Captain but then when he eventually did, he was sent away.
A fictional journalist, Steadman, who has made a name for himself chasing bodies at disaster sites, misses out on the first bodies being brought back from the sight of the Titanic but he realises there is a much bigger story to be uncovered. He then refuses to let go in his quest to discover what happened on the Californian. He shows such tenacity and drive to get to the truth.Read more ›
This is the fictional story seen through the eyes of a reporter, the Captain of that ship, and some of his men, of what happened on that fateful night.
The Californian was an ordinary ship, carrying ordinary cargoes, but why did her Captain not go to the stricken Titanic's aid when he was told by his 2nd Officer that he saw her distress rockets?
Many, many stories have been written about the Titanic over the last hundred years, I've even read some of them, but this is giving a very different take on the events.
The reporter, John Steadman, aims to find the definitive answer. He was a man who wrote stories of the intimate and the domestic, the downtrodden and the destitute, the liars and hypocrites. He could smell there was a story on the ship, there were so many unanswered questions.
This was a book with very detailed writing, it sometimes dragged on and I felt like I was reading the same words over and over again.
But overall I found it a fascinating read, slowly building up the suspense, weaving in the actual facts with fiction, I think The Midnight Watch is a very promising debut by author David Dyer.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this book and once started could not put it down.I have read many accounts of the tragedy that was Titanic but this one was very different and told in a very unique way. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Mrs. I. S. Young
I am never surprised to see a new debut novel with the majestic hook of the RMS Titanic dangling out of book descriptions. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Elspeth G. Perkin
I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
This novel is a work of fiction, but it is based upon real life events and a lot of... Read more
A fascinating new take on the Titanic disaster. I couldn't put it down.Published 9 months ago by Maureen Ward
This is based on terrific research by the author and is full of convincing local colour. I am hot on anachronisms (which most recent period novels are packed with), but this book... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
I simply did not want to put down this well-researched historical novel which explores possible reasons for the Californian's failure to respond to the Titanic's distress signals. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Ninaminacat
I won't describe the plot of The Midnight Watch, as this can be read about in the Amazon Book Description above. Read morePublished 10 months ago by bobbewig