How to Survive the Titanic or The Sinking of J. Bruce Ismay Paperback – 15 Mar 2012
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Beautifully written, and beautifully deconstructed (Sunday Times)
A gripping study - part reportage, part biography, part literary criticism - of the more intimate ramifications of a disaster which still haunts the public imagination (Sunday Telegraph)
Wonderfully rich and multi-layered ... Full of fascinating details ... It is one of the few works of recent non-fiction that would benefit from a second, or even a third reading. Every sentence crackles with intelligence (Mail on Sunday)
Masterful and timely (Daily Telegraph)
An unusual and creative book ... in the end, the subject of this fascinating book is not just historical or biographical uncertainty, but psychological and moral ambiguity (Guardian)
Wilson's biography is beautifully written and beautifully constructed (Sunday Times)
The strange and fascinating story of the owner of the Titanic, J. Bruce Ismay, the man who jumped shipSee all Product description
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Another annoying thing is that the first 65 page's are about everybody else from the sinking and all he hear about ismay is how miserable he was and what everybody else thought.
There seems to be more on captain Smith in the first page's than ismay and references to all sorts of bizarre literature for comparison including noahs ark. The book is bloated with irrelevant and inaccurate content, I put the book down, I can see why the media enjoyed it because it's full of rubbish.
It is interesting to look at Ismay's background and at what made him tick, and to see him as the human being he was, who made a particular very human decision in a moment of extreme stress - and who are we to judge a human reaction in such extreme disastrous conditions? - but the book was too long and drawn out for my liking. In particular, a great deal was made of parallels between Ismay's experience and the life and works of Joseph Conrad, in particular his novel Lord Jim. This seemed to go on excessively and was too repetitive. Also repetitive was Ismay's correspondence with Marian Thayer, a sympathetic survivor who he considered was the only person who understood him. There were just too many digressions diverting this book from its central interesting, but somewhat overblown, thesis.