Gilded Lives, Fatal Voyage: The Titanic’s First-Class Passengers and Their World
The Titanic has captured popular imagination for the last hundred years, and for good reason — it’s a tale of hubris and heroism, of lives saved and even more lives lost. Brewster, who has studied Titanic history for twenty-five years, skillfully tells the story of some of the Titanic’s wealthiest passengers, many of whom were scions of the Gilded Age whose names are familiar even to contemporary Americans. The focus is on the passengers, rather than the ship and the voyage, and Brewster explores the lives of the passengers as well as the circumstances behind their presence on the ship. The story of the Titanic is well-known, and we all know how it ends, but Brewster’s retelling, with its focus on the goings-on among the first-class passengers, reads like a thriller. This is an excellent addition to the rapidly-expanding body of literature on the disaster, and a fine tribute to the heroes on board the doomed liner.