The Titanic sank into the ocean 101 years ago, and its tragic story has intrigued the world ever since. Actually even during the period in which the Titanic was being built people were intrigued about it due to all of the press buzz, the size of the ship, and the title of “unsinkable ship” even though it was only its first voyage. Some of the richest in the world were aboard the ship as well as some of the poorest immigrants. There were also countless number of crew members. All together there were countless number of individual stories, some of which are finally given a voice, thanks to Allan Wolf and his verse novel The Watch That Ends the Night: Voices from the Titanic.
Everyone has a voice in this compelling interpretation of what happened aboard the Titanic. No one is left out not even the ship rat or the iceberg. Even the undertaker who took care of the bodies gets a voice. There are twenty four voices total. It was so interesting to put a voice to some of the people that I have spent time learning and reading about in the past. It was as if the voices were actually speaking to us, and sharing their secrets and their truths. It was so personable, and kept me turning the pages until the very end.
I loved the attention to detail within the book. It was very obvious that Allan Wolf did his research when it came to this subject. His interpretation of the class differences was absolutely fantastic. Also, the way in which he put names and voices to some of the third class passages, which sadly is an often forgotten part of the tragedy, was wonderful. It made me feel like he actually cared about them and that he wanted to have their stories heard which I honestly believe to be true.
Another favorite part of mine while reading The Watch That Ends the Night was the word spacing or the layout of the words. I loved how for certain characters the words were written in a certain way, or spaced in a certain way, or how as the action got greater and more intense, the spacing in the words was different. It’s kind of hard to explain without someone seeing it but it is very artistically done, and I thought it helped the poetic verse, and the emotional intensity of the novel.
If you have ever had an interest in the Titanic, and want to learn more about it, or if you’ve ever imagines what those voices on the Titanic might have to say, check out this book. It puts a real human face to history in a truly wonderfully unique way. Honestly, I would recommend The Watch That Ends the Night to anyone. In fact, I already have recommended it to one of my residents at work (she loved it), and currently one of my supervisors is reading it (and I’m sure she’ll love it too), and who knows I may just convince you to check it out too. I hope so!
Disclosure: Received ARC from April
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