These articles are taken from the Los Angeles Times archives and presented wherever possible in their original form.
Titanic: 100 Years Laterby Los Angeles Times staff
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“Titanic: 100 Years Later” features a century of Los Angeles Times’ coverage, from the disaster and its immediate aftermath to the legacy of remembrance that continues to captivate us today. This collection, compiled by The Times staff from the paper’s archives, travels back to the early 20th century, where the story unfolds through the actual newspaper coverage written in the days after the sinking, and continues up to the present day. “Titanic” is a compelling journey through history as well as a fresh perspective on one of the epic tragedies of the modern era. The book includes iconic front page stories and riveting reports on events, people and cultural phenomena that only appeared in The Times.
Part 1 (“Disaster”) transports you back to April 15, 1912, to relive the event through the original newspaper articles, presented unaltered in the distinctive writing style of the time. You experience the catastrophe just as readers did 100 years ago. The nation focuses on the fate of social elite with names like Astor, Guggenheim, Widener and Straus, and Los Angeles waits anxiously for word on the Clarks, a railroad baron’s son and his wife returning from a second honeymoon. As the rescue ship with survivors steams toward New York, the ghastly but absorbing details of the disaster emerge through first-hand accounts: the initial lack of concern giving way to panic and chaos; armed ship’s officers enforcing the “women and children first” rule; the noble actions of Capt. E. J. Smith and famous passengers; and lifeboat occupants’ views of the ship plunging into blackness. When the survivors reach land, scrutiny intensifies on White Star Line chief J. Bruce Ismay, called before a U.S. Senate committee to answer for his company’s acts as well as his own.
Part 2 (“Legacy and Discovery”) captures the renewed interest in the Titanic that began in the 1970s and ’80s. Follow the efforts of adventurers vying to be the first to discover Titanic's resting place. Meet Los Angeles-area survivors like Edwina MacKenzie, who settled in Hermosa Beach and whose memories 70 years—and three husbands—later are still fresh in 1982. Recall the dramatic 1985 discovery and exploration of the wreckage 2-1/2 miles beneath the ocean. Get to know Titanic enthusiasts like Charles Sachs, organizer of an annual L.A.-based commemoration, and Robert Pirrone, builder of an 18-foot scale Titanic model he began at age 15. And get perspectives from renowned Times columnists Jack Smith and Patt Morrison.
Part 3 (“On Film and Stage”) revisits works of fiction inspired by the event: three major movies and a long-forgotten German opera. The Times covers the controversial making of the 1997 blockbuster “Titanic” and profiles Leo and Kate on the verge of superstardom. In the midst of the 1998 award accolades, the paper also stirs a “Titanic” clash of viewpoints between Times movie critic Kenneth Turan, who renders an unrestrained appraisal of what the film’s success means for the future of cinema, and director James Cameron, the famously opinionated director who responds with an essay of his own.
Part 4 ("Centennial") brings the Titanic saga up to date with Times coverage of the worldwide flurry of activity surrounding the 100th anniversary of the sinking. Patt Morrison talks in-depth with the ultimate Titanic fanatic, James Cameron, about why the disaster still resonates today. And Times travel writer Christopher Reynolds follows the trail of survivors and non-survivors to New York and Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Part 5 (“Epilogue”) covers the end of an era as the last survivor, Millvina Dean, dies. A touching obituary for Dean retells her family's experience on that fateful night, which took her father. The journey closes with a return to the beginning: elegies—some sorrowful, some scolding—delivered at Los Angeles-area churches during the April 21, 1912, memorial services.
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I have been a Titanic nut for years. I was actually on a cruise in the Caribbean when the 100th anniversary happened and did not fail to see the irony there. I bought this book with high expectations and I was not disappointed. It seems to be a collection of news stories, though it took me a little while of reading to get that fact. Reading on the Nook may have taken away a little from the overall feel of that. I can imagine that looking at it in a book you can see that from the get go. Anyway, I enjoyed the stories and could feel the pain and sorrow that came along with them. Sometimes it was heartbreaking to read. The only reason I didn''t give this book full stars, I felt like there was just a little too much effort put into the movie "Titanic" While I think a chapter could have been devoted to the movie, I didn't think that we needed to have interviews with the cast and a "what they did after they made the movie" story line. and all all the critic's blurbs. I bought the book to learn more about Titanic the actual ship and the events of April 15th 1912, not to learn about movie making and the fact that James Cameron was irritated by a narrow minded critic. While that is interesting stuff, I just think it didn't necessarily belong in this particular book. So, if you enjoy oceanic history, or like me, loved the movie and want to learn more about the real deal. This is a great book. Just be prepared for a flood of empathetic feelings.
I recommend this book because it is about the Titanic. I did not buy it but just buy the summary, it seems good.