Dead Wake by Erik Larson is a nonfiction account of the German unterseeboot, or U-boat, sinking of Lusitania, a British merchant vessel belonging to Cunard Line, on May 7, 1915, and its aftermath.
On the night of May 6, 1915, Captain William Thomas reassured the passengers in the first-class lounge as the ship approached the "area of war" off the southern coast of Ireland.
The Great War, later known as World War I, had been raging in France since July 28, 1914, following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie.
In August of 1914, President Woodrow Wilson's wife, Ellen, died of Bright's disease. Her death left Wilson grief stricken. Two days before her death, Britain entered the war in Europe. Wilson chose to keep America neutral in the war and refused to allow British and German warships to enter US ports.
Please note: This is an unofficial summary and analysis of the book and not the original book.