My Blog

My Blog



April 24, 2016


A novel of
The Titanic
The Californian
David Dyer

The Midnight Watch

(from Night Owl Reviews)
  • Number: 9781250080936
  • Release: April 5, 2016
  • Author: David Dyer
  • Availability: Print-Book
  • Genre: Mainstream
  • Tags: HIST: Historical Fiction
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press

As the Titanic and her passengers sank slowly into the Atlantic Ocean after striking an iceberg late in the evening of April 14, 1912, a nearby ship looked on. Second Officer Herbert Stone, in charge of the midnight watch on the SS Californian sitting idly a few miles north, saw the distress rockets that the Titanic fired. He alerted the captain, Stanley Lord, who was sleeping in the chartroom below, but Lord did not come to the bridge. Eight rockets were fired during the dark hours of the midnight watch, and eight rockets were ignored. The next morning, the Titanic was at the bottom of the sea and more than 1,500 people were dead. When they learned of the extent of the tragedy, Lord and Stone did everything they could to hide their role in the disaster, but pursued by newspapermen, lawyers, and political leaders in America and England, their terrible secret was eventually revealed. The Midnight Watch is a fictional telling of what may have occurred that night on the SS Californian, and the resulting desperation of Officer Stone and Captain Lord in the aftermath of their inaction. Told not only from the perspective of the SS Californian crew, but also through the eyes of a family of third-class passengers who perished in the disaster, the narrative is drawn together by Steadman, a tenacious Boston journalist who does not rest until the truth is found. David Dyer's The Midnight Watch is a powerful and dramatic debut novel--the result of many years of research in Liverpool, London, New York, and Boston, and informed by the author's own experiences as a ship's officer and a lawyer.

 This is the author's debut novel. This isn't your regular Titanic story.  The author doesn't go there until the end of the story. That way you didn't go through the sinking and that awful night so many died.  The Titanic was sinking and the SS Californian was standing by watching. The story starts off on a completely different subject. A child dies after John Steadman, a writer and his wife along with two children go to Venezuela.  This hits the heart hard. As Steadman boards the Californian things aren't as he believed they would be.  No bodies from the Titanic but instead a press conference was held.  Was this a cover up of something worse and bigger? The author gave us such descriptive characters and we get to know them as though we were on board the Titanic and the Californian No one is speaking about what really happened. As Steadman investigates and researches little slivers of truth start to come out and slowly the story takes shape.  Did the captains act in the appropriate way?  Did they follow protocol?  If you are looking for a different tale of the Titanic, you have to read this.  You'll discover about the Californian on that awful night.  Did they help or just stand by?  Most people never heard about how the Californian was near by when fate took it's place.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Night Owl Reviews and the author, David Dyer in exchange for my unbiased view.

I would give this book 4 STARS.

 About the Author
David Dyer was born and raised in Shellharbour, a small coastal town in New South Wales, Australia. He has served as an officer in the Australian merchant navy and worked as a litigation lawyer at the firm that represented the owners of the Titanic in the aftermath of the disaster. His access to countless documents and artifacts has informed and inspired his work in The Midnight Watch. He lives in central Sydney and Katoomba, a small mountain town in New South Wales.

No comments: