- Explore more great deals on thousands of titles in our Deals in Books store.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
A Night to Remember Paperback – Bargain Price, January 7, 2005
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Special offers and product promotions
James Cameron's 1997 Titanic movie is a smash hit, but Walter Lord's 1955 classic remains in some ways unsurpassed. Lord interviewed scores of Titanic passengers, fashioning a gripping you-are-there account of the ship's sinking that you can read in half the time it takes to see the film. The book boasts many perfect movie moments not found in Cameron's film. When the ship hits the berg, passengers see "tiny splinters of ice in the air, fine as dust, that give off myriads of bright colors whenever caught in the glow of the deck lights." Survivors saw dawn reflected off other icebergs in a rainbow of shades, depending on their angle toward the sun: pink, mauve, white, deep blue--a landscape so eerie, a little boy tells his mom, "Oh, Muddie, look at the beautiful North Pole with no Santa Claus on it."
A Titanic funnel falls, almost hitting a lifeboat--and consequently washing it 30 yards away from the wreck, saving all lives aboard. One man calmly rides the vertical boat down as it sinks, steps into the sea, and doesn't even get his head wet while waiting to be successfully rescued. On one side of the boat, almost no males are permitted in the lifeboats; on the other, even a male Pekingese dog gets a seat. Lord includes a crucial, tragically ironic drama Cameron couldn't fit into the film: the failure of the nearby ship Californian to save all those aboard the sinking vessel because distress lights were misread as random flickering and the telegraph was an early wind-up model that no one wound.
Lord's account is also smarter about the horrifying class structure of the disaster, which Cameron reduces to hollow Hollywood formula. No children died in the First and Second Class decks; 53 out of 76 children in steerage died. According to the press, which regarded the lower-class passengers as a small loss to society, "The night was a magnificent confirmation of women and children first, yet somehow the loss rate was higher for Third Class children than First Class men." As the ship sank, writes Lord, "the poop deck, normally Third Class space ... was suddenly becoming attractive to all kinds of people." Lord's logic is as cold as the Atlantic, and his bitter wit is quite dry. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
Publicity surrounding the Academy Award- winning motion picture Titanic makes this a sure-to-circulate choice. Lord's classic time-travel tale drawn from survivors' accounts remains the best Titanic story after all these years. The analysis of the event moves from reports of pretrip hype through the ambiance of the fated last evening to first reports of trouble, loading life boats, and rescue efforts. Though the recording features no atmosphere music or sound effects, Fred Williams's reading sounds so like a news report that the immediacy engages the reader from the start. Highly recommended for all collections.ASandy Glover, West Linn P.L., OR
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Discover books for all types of engineers, auto enthusiasts, and much more. Learn more
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The book is based on newspaper articles written prior to and after the tragedy. Also, the author interviewed the survivors still living in the early 1950's, prior to publishing this book.
The writing is straightforward. There are no conversations "recreated" by the author, nor does he embellish things for dramatic effect. This book is the retelling of the tragedy from those who were there. There are conflicting stories because, as is true with eye witness accounts, everyone sees and interprets things through their own lenses.
The style of writing is dry. However, the magnitude of the tragedy was so large, and the continuing fascination so great, that this book is well worth reading. Over 2,000 passengers were on the Titanic on its maiden voyage. Seven hundred survived.
Lord's "A Night to Remember" is a minute-by-minute account of the Titanic's final hours as told to Lord through countless hours of interview and research. This painstaking detail which he puts into the book is told in detail near the end of the book as he recounts the pages of research, interviews, and reading that he put into writing the book, even some of the conflicting details givens by witnesses. Please note that there is no central protagonist; consequently, the story will seem to jump around depending on who is recounting the story at the time. However, Lord has done a masterful job at putting all the information together and weaving it around the ship's historic timeline and creating a very readable and realistic work of non-fiction. With a passenger list in the back, detailing those who survived and those who didn't, the class prejudices and segregations are chillingly revealed; all three passenger classes are listed: the very wealthy, the middle class, and the lowly immigrants (or steerage) - and finally, the crew members from the officers to humble stewards.
The 1958 British movie production of "A Night to Remember" remains perhaps the definitive dramatization of the disaster, adhering to the known facts of the time and achieving a documentary-like immediacy rather than a romanticized disaster. James Cameron's epic "Titanic" was released 39 years later and certainly broke box office records. Certainly, Cameron's film has its moments, but in truth I only liked it for the chance it gave me to see a great old ocean liner brought to life again on screen, not the romanticized "King of the World"! In "A Night To Remember", the effects are obviously not nearly so impressive, but the story-line is far better. Although addressed by Cameron, Lord's account reveals the horrifying class structure of the disaster, "which Cameron reduces to hollow Hollywood formula." No children died in the First and Second Class decks; however, 53 out of 76 children in steerage (great diction) died. Lord's "A Night to Remember" proved that truth is far more compelling than romanticized fiction.
Though the book is full of detail about the events of the night, it is a rather dispassionate factual telling of the story. Many famous and important passengers are named, but why they are on the ship and what they were thinking during the tragedy is not revealed. Nor is there any revelation or insight from any of the crew. Truly, the real story here is the shocking loss of life and the reaction of the crew and passengers during and following the event. But there is no coverage at all of what happened after the sinking, other than the fact that future ships had enough life boats. I'm sure there are many other books written about the Titanic that come at the story from a different angle, so this book should be regarded as just one of the sources if you are interested in knowing more about her story.