Dawn of Infamy: A Sunken Ship, a Vanished Crew, and the Final Mystery of Pearl Harbor
Stephen Harding researched a small part of World War II military history in Dawn of Infamy (first published in 2010) with the amazing details typical of a good journalist. This is a marine history that remains a mystery to this day—the loss of a lumber-hauling army-contracted ship from the West coast to Hawaii. A Japanese submarine torpedoed and sank the ship shortly before Pearl Harbor. Harding describes the circumstances preceding the event in painstaking detail; the book seems to be written mostly as a full historic record more than as pleasant reading material, making it more suitable on a library reference shelf. Though some readers intensely interested in military history might enjoy the fine details, most readers will quickly lose interest and skip to the next chapter. Harding’s writing is good, but the book is not a page-turner, and it’s almost boring in places and filled with fluff. Few readers will resist skipping pages when he describes the history of the ship from her birth on or gives the biography of each and every lost member of the thirty-five-person crew. It helps to understand marine terminology. Detailed notes and a bibliography end the volume.
Da Capo Press