cover image Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the ‘Lusitania’

Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the ‘Lusitania’

Erik Larson, read by Scott Brick. Random House Audio, , 11 CDs, 13 hrs., $45 ISBN 978-0-553-55162-4

Reader Brick’s measured, natural voice is a soothing counterweight to Larson’s tragic recounting of the 1915 sinking of the British passenger ship Lusitania by a German U-boat—one of the catalysts for the United States’ eventual entry into World War I on the side of the Allied Powers. Brick maintains a steady hand when describing scenes of heightened emotion, such as the critical 18 minutes it took the ship to sink. He does not engage in showy voice characterizations or individual accents for the story’s international cast of characters, which includes English officers, American passengers, and the captain of the German U-boat (though Brick’s pronunciation of the book’s German words and names is excellent). Brick’s understated approach is fitting for this work of history, bringing poignant humanity to those who survived and those who lost their lives on the Lusitania. A Crown hardcover. (Mar.)