Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Band That Played On by Steve Turner

The musicians who went down with the Titanic, playing “Nearer my God to Thee,” have achieved near legendary status. Books and movies have used the incident as an example of courage and self-sacrifice. Steve Turner has gone a step further. This is the story of the eight musicians and what their world was like.

Most of the musicians came from relatively humble backgrounds. Being a musician on a ship was a chance to see the world and earn more money than they might on shore. I was fascinated by their stories. Turner has managed to paint a picture of the age of the ocean liners where cosseted passengers traveled in luxury. I found the contrast between the early lives of the musicians and the grandeur of life on the great ocean liners extremely interesting. It gave me and expanded view of Edwardian England.

I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the early 1900's It's a telling glimpse of life before the Great War of a time that will never come again. Steve Turner did an excellent job of finding first hand sources, including interesting photos, to tell the inspirational story of these brave me.

I reviewed this book as part of the Thomas Nelson Book Sneeze program.