Sunday, November 27, 2011
Book Review of #1 Titanic The Long Night by Diane Hoh
Author: Diane Hoh
Part of a Series: Titanic Duology: Remembering the Titanic next
Type of book: Titanic, first class, third class, April 1912, young adult
Year it was published: 1998
Who will survive the long night?
Everyone thought the RMS Titanic could never sink. But when it struck a huge iceberg just before midnight on April 14th, 1912, the helpless passengers found out they were wrong.
Beautiful Elizabeth Farr and dashing Max Whittaker in the first class...Brian and Patrick Kelleher and pretty red-haired Kathleen Hanrahan in steerage...Everyone is faced with biting cold and chruning black waters, tilting lifeboats and pathetic screams. Some will live, but more than fifteen hundred will die on that disastrous night. Will Elizabeth, Max, and Kathleen be among the survivors?
The characters are painted vividly and aren't easily forgettable, although I do wish that the author could have included why Elizabeth is hell-bent on getting an education. It's interesting that Katie's primary desire is to be a singer. The men also have memorable personalities; Max being teasing yet at the same trying his best to care for Elizabeth, and Paddy also being caring towards Katie. The chemistry and attraction between both sets of couples feels natural to me.
Be prepared for unexpected.
This was written in third person omniscient point of view, from Elizabeth's and Katie's points of views. I've read this novel second, accidentally getting Remember The Titanic. Still though, day to day interactions of Elizabeth's and Katie's lives are interesting; the societies they grew up in, the freedom or lack of freedom both experience, and the difference in tongues, Elizabeth's refined while Katie has an Irish brogue.
Diane Hoh is the author of fifty-seven novels for young adults. She grew up in Warren, Pennsylvania but currently resides in Austin, Texas. Reading and writing are her favorite things, also gardening and grandchildren. (From goodreads.com)
I've read this years ago, and even though I re-read it again, I still found it a beautiful and well done story with alternating points of view from Elizabeth and Kathleen. The author is talented as well as skilled in showing some differences between the women yet how both of them seem to be similar to the readers; I'm sure that anyone can easily identify with Elizabeth's desire to become independent of her family and be able to think for herself. I was impressed that the first class tone of the book really matched Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence where everything speaks volumes. And readers will also be able to identify with Katie Hanrahan and her excitement and fears of the unknown. The Irish brogue is interesting to read and understandable. Also what is interesting are the times the two see each other but don't really meet throughout the whole book. The romances between Max and Elizabeth and Katie and Paddy are interesting to read, especially how they are discovered. What I also liked are the slight hints placed in the book on what would happen to the ship. (Katie's dream, Elizabeth's remark, etc.)
4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)