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Posted October 29, 2000
It has been a while since I have read a Titanic book from start to finish in one sitting, but I did with this book. The Last Log is another one of the many `alternate theories¿ of the sinking books that are so in vogue these days, but unlike most others of it¿s ilk, this one has real teeth. I am a complete layman in things nautical, but Brown enabled me to understand every point he was trying to make, even some of the more arcane concepts like Bernoulli¿s Principle and lolling. The author has written one of the most knowledgeable accounts from a mariner¿s perspective that I have ever read. In addition, Brown has gathered much of the conflicting testimony and arranged it into a cohesive whole. I did not agree with all of his conclusions (and some of them are WAY out there), but I have to acknowledge that his version of events is completely credible. For one, First Officer Murdoch¿s actions are finally recognized for what they were, that of one of the most competent officer¿s to ever command a bridge. Ismay also gets a great deal of coverage, and although his part in the story is much, much darker, the author avoids the `sinister villain¿ oversimplifications the White Star Line chairman has received at the hands of many other authors. On the other hand, Brown does make some incredible claims, often with little or no supporting evidence. One of the largest, that Titanic was dodging ice for hours before the final collision. Another being that when the ship ported around the berg, it almost collided with a huge ice field just beyond. There is simply no eyewitness evidence to support these claims. Some members on the Titanic Mail List were initially put off by the in-your-face attitude of the editorials adapted by the publisher as a selling ploy. But don¿t let that stop you from reading this book. It¿s that good. Highest recommendation. Michael (TheManInBlack) T
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Posted April 18, 2011
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