• audiobook

Editor’s Note

“The definitive account…”

Over a century after the Lusitania’s sinking in WWI, Larson provides the definitive account of the players and the circumstances that led to this tragedy. A shockingly gripping account of a little-known history.
Scribd Editor

From the Publisher

#1 New York Times Bestseller

From the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania


On May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner as richly appointed as an English country house sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool, carrying a record number of children and infants. The passengers were surprisingly at ease, even though Germany had declared the seas around Britain to be a war zone. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era's great transatlantic "Greyhounds"-the fastest liner then in service-and her captain, William Thomas Turner, placed tremendous faith in the gentlemanly strictures of warfare that for a century had kept civilian ships safe from attack. 

Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game, and Walther Schwieger, the captain of Unterseeboot-20, was happy to oblige. Meanwhile, an ultra-secret British intelligence unit tracked Schwieger's U-boat, but told no one. As U-20 and the Lusitania made their way toward Liverpool, an array of forces both grand and achingly small-hubris, a chance fog, a closely guarded secret, and more-all converged to produce one of the great disasters of history.

It is a story that many of us think we know but don't, and Erik Larson tells it thrillingly, switching between hunter and hunted while painting a larger portrait of America at the height of the Progressive Era. Full of glamour and suspense, Dead Wake brings to life a cast of evocative characters, from famed Boston bookseller Charles Lauriat to pioneering female architect Theodate Pope to President Woodrow Wilson, a man lost to grief, dreading the widening war but also captivated by the prospect of new love. 

Gripping and important, Dead Wake captures the sheer drama and emotional power of a disaster whose intimate details and true meaning have long been obscured by history.
Published: Random House Audio on
ISBN: 9780553551631
Unabridged
Listen on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania
With a 30 day free trial you can listen to one free audiobook per month

    Related Articles

    NPR
    3 min read

    At A Hefty Cost, World War I Made The U.S. A Major Military Power

    World War I sometimes seems like the war America forgot. The U.S. entered the fight a century ago, on April 6, 1917, nearly three years after it erupted in Europe during the summer of 1914. The Americans made quite a splash, turning a stalemate in favor of their British and French allies. The cost was hefty, with the U.S. losing 116,000 troops in a war that claimed some 9 million lives. Yet it also marked the coming of age of the American military, which transformed itself overnight from a small army engaged in regional battles into a major powerhouse — a role it maintains to this day. Still,
    Inc.
    2 min read

    The Wind At His Back

    SHEILA MARIKAR ON A RECENT cloudless Thursday, Spoon Singh, a co-founder of the Hawaii-based beermaker Kona Brewing Company, watched the sun set from his sailboat, off the coast of Marina del Rey, California. Five friends were aboard, throwing back beers and listening to some pretty out-there funk streaming from the speakers of The Indulgence, Singh’s boat. “My religion is very simple these days,” says Singh, who wears a strand of clear beads around his wrist. “Basically, watch the sun set and enjoy life and appreciate the day being on the water.” In 1994, Singh and his dad founded Kona, wh
    Money
    2 min read

    A Mast With a Past

    SHE WAS SITTING on a rusted trailer in a driveway on a street in Rhode Island where we were staying on vacation. She was full of dead leaves and rainwater, a fiberglass relic of the 1960s. Her paint was faded, and her deck was laced with hairline cracks. It was love at first sight. What I saw was a boat that could be my very own, a sleek centerboard sloop, 20 feet long, ready to take me wherever I pointed it. What my wife, Susan, saw was a needy addition to the family. But she didn’t veto the purchase, and I, in my wisdom, never asked her to help me work on it. I bought my dream a decade ago