On 15 April 2012, it will be 100 years since the Titanic
sank. Since that fateful night, stories about the sinking have become
legendary - how the band played to
the end, how lifeboats were lowered half-empty - but amongst the films,
novels and academic arguments, only those who were there can
separate truth from fiction.
After the sinking, inquiries into the loss of 1,517 lives (out of
2,223 aboard) were held in both the UK and US. The proceedings produced
1,000 pages of transcripts. Some of the testimonies were inevitably less than impartial, but as a whole the
transcripts represent the most thorough and complete account of the
sinking, told in the voices of those who were there.
For the first time these transcripts have been specially edited and arranged chronologically, so that they tell the story of
the Titanic's sinking as a narrative, rather than a list of
questions and answers in a courtroom. The
witnesses are transformed into characters in a much bigger
story, and the events are described from different perspectives of people in
every part of the ship, from a stoker in the boiler room escaping his
section before the watertight doors sealed behind him, to first class
passengers trying to buy their way onto lifeboats.
Capturing the disbelief, the chaos and the terror of the disaster, this
unique book brings to life the tragedy through the voices of those who