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The Watch That Ends the Night

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  3,190 ratings  ·  693 reviews
Arrogance and innocence, hubris and hope--twenty-four haunting voices of the Titanic tragedy, as well as the iceberg itself, are evoked in a stunning tour de force.

Millionaire John Jacob Astor hopes to bring home his pregnant teen bride with a minimum of media scandal. A beautiful Lebanese refugee, on her way to family in Florida, discovers the first stirrings of love. And
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published October 11th 2011 by Candlewick Press
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Chelsea K. There's nothing inappropriate in this book beyond hinting at things like extramarital affairs of the very rich characters or the descriptions of the d…moreThere's nothing inappropriate in this book beyond hinting at things like extramarital affairs of the very rich characters or the descriptions of the dying masses after the sinking (mostly heard, not seen). I'd say any age above 10 could read this if they have the technical reading ability.(less)
Alana There really isn't an age limit, I believe that children over the age of 13 should read this, as it has complex words and difficult vocabulary.…moreThere really isn't an age limit, I believe that children over the age of 13 should read this, as it has complex words and difficult vocabulary.(less)

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Average rating 4.13  · 
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 ·  3,190 ratings  ·  693 reviews

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Jan 25, 2012 rated it it was ok
Novels in verse, done well, are rare.
And I can show you why…
This is not a poem simply because I say it is.
It is not a poem because I split
A sentence between several lines
.............Or finger the tab key
This is not a poem, no not a poem,
Because I repeat a phrase here and there.
This is not a poem because from time to time
I toss in a tired end rhyme
Or use funky punctuation—
To highlight a clause.
This is not a poem because I italicize special thoughts
Or with the clickety
Apr 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Audiobook narrated by several actors 10 10m

If I had attempted to read this in book format, it might just have ended up in the DNF category. Alan Wolf creates the perfect Titanic story that fits well in the audio category. Twenty-four voices rise up from the deep of the North Atlantic, including a sophisticated rat and the poetic iceberg.

I am not sure what exactly accounts for my ongoing fascination with the Titanic tragedy, but I continue to be drawn to its decks and its people. Of course, n
Leslie Bryan
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Let me first say two things: I am a *serious* Titanic enthusiast. I do not voluntarily read poetry.

With those confessions made, let me make another: I loved -The Watch That Ends the Night-. It was a couldn't put it down, stay up til the A.M. to finish kind of read for me. While some details were creatively smudged, the portrayal of the Titanic and its passengers rivals that of James Cameron (and maybe beats him out, except for the lack of Leo and Kate).

I imagine writing a novel using only verse
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Oh man, the idea of this is so cool, but the moment I hit the POV of the iceberg out to get the Titanic, I knew this absolutely was not for me.
Kellee Moye
Complete review at:

Told from 24 different perspectives in multiple genres such as verse, letters, undertaker's notes, telegrams, forms and booklets, this harrowing tale takes the reader through the journey that different people took on the Titanic. The points of view range from workers like lookouts and stokers, 3rd class passengers like an immigrant and refugee, 2nd class passengers like a tailor, 1st class passengers like a millionaire and socialite as
Edward Sullivan
So much has been written about the Titanic, it's hard to imagine an author finding a fresh perspective but Allan Wolf pulls it off and quite brilliantly. The voices of the captain, crew members, passengers from all three class, the shipboard rats, the embalmer searching for bodies floating among the wreckage, and even the iceberg are brought vividly to life in verse. Like his New Found Land, this is unique, engrossing historical fiction. ...more
Margaret Carpenter
Aug 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
o hi it's one of my favorite books ever

@caitlyn the cover art is jon klassen in case you needed another reason to love this book

also, can we talk about how the iceberg's poems get shorter and shorter as it melts because i did NOT pick up on that the first time through.

i just love this book a lot.

k bye
Katie Grace
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
It took me awhile to get into the rhythm and voice of this book, but after that I really enjoyed it! Super unique and special. (And I recommend reading it with the titanic soundtrack. ;)
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The Titanic story has certainly been told and told again over the 100 years since her sinking, but in this book, Allan Wolf has managed to capture the voices of the beings that were part of that story in a wholly new and captivating way. THE WATCH THAT ENDS THE NIGHT is a novel-in-verse that chronicles the story of the unsinkable Titanic, from the boarding and preparations to set sail to the voyage, the sinking, and the Carpathia's rescue and delivery of the survivors to New York. The undertaker ...more
Apr 14, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
I tried this audio book because it was listed on the Hub Reading Challenge 2013. Oh well.

I recently read Titanic:Voices from the Disaster by Deborah Hopkinson,Titanic: Voices From the Disaster and this one just can't compete.

From the beginning I struggled listening to a malevolent female iceberg, who has watched human history since the cave men (really? all the way from the north pole? that's some vision) and set out on purpose to 'meet' the Titanic. Or talk about the 'voice' of the rat,
May 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
LOVE LOVE LOVE! Historical Fiction Novel in Verse is my favorite kind of book. Allan Wolf makes history come alive and uses words like a true craftsman. The end matter was an amazing cherry on top of this well written and amazingly well put together novel.
Saturday's Child
It took a little while for me to get hold of a copy of this and then to sit down and read it, but boy was it worth the wait.
Aug 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing and I see no reason not to give it 5 stars. I decided to read it because I'm always intrigued by anything Titanic, but I wasn't sure if I was going to like the poetry/verse. But I loved it! It was not difficult to read in any way, in fact I think it made the story stand out more. There were some very profound lines, knowing what's going to happen. My favorite from the book was probably this one from the perspective of the captian:

"I cannot imagine my career, uneventful as
Dec 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: met-the-author
I need to give this 7 stars
Mar 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
This wasn't my usual pick for a read but I actually enjoyed it. The poetry was great and the different perspectives melded together beautifully. I would recommend this to a history/poetry nerd. ...more
Jan 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! It was also written in verse for people who like books like that. I loved this book because it put you in the shoes of the passengers of the Titanic. I also like this book because it was about one of my favorite historical events The Titanic. It also made you feel like you were in First, Second, and third class. But this book was very sad. This book is definitely for history buffs. This book is not for people;le who like sad books.
Margo Tanenbaum
Jul 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: immigrants, titanic
What else could be left to say about the Titanic, we could wonder. A quick WorldCat search for juvenile historical fiction about the Titanic turned up dozens of titles, including quite a few coming out in 2011. I must be one of the few people around, at least over the age of 30, who never saw the wildly popular 1997 movie, but I was curious to read this new teen novel by poet Allan Wolf about the 1912 disaster at sea. I am a huge fan of his 2004 novel, New Found Land: Lewis and Clark’s Voyage of ...more
Kyle Norcross
Oct 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
In the novel, The Watch That Ends the Night, by Allan Wolf the story of the Titanic is told in a new and interesting way. Wolf uses a verse technique which includes many different characters. The book starts with the growing excitement for the voyage of the Titanic. Each character begins their trip to board the enormous White Star Line Ship and each has their own thoughts and feelings. The ship builder, one of the first characters introduced, is joyful to see his work of art sail away with no d ...more
Wow. What a book. For me it was like The Book Thief where I started out with "This is OK" and "I'm a little confused with a couple of things" and especially "Why did these people tell me it was so amazing--I don't see that." And then, as with The Book Thief, I cannot tell you exactly when, how, or why, but suddenly I knew this book was amazing.

So, it already had me with being a Titanic book. And I was intrigued that it was various voices from the story to show so many aspects of this event in hi
Apr 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book was absolutely fantastic and quite unique. Wolf tells the story of the voyage and subsequent sinking of the TITANIC by way of poetry. Using a dozen or so different voices of real people who sailed on the ship, Wolf weaves together fiction and history to create an utterly compelling tale. Now, I've seen all the Titanic movies and read various other books on the subject - it's always been something that has fascinated me. So I wasn't expecting to feel anything new or different when readi ...more
Alyssa Calhoun
Nov 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
First, you should know two things: I love poetry and I am obsessed with Titanic. Which pretty much set me up to declare to you that this was one of my favorite books ever. I can't believe I've had it for several months and haven't read it (I lent it to some children first).

Truly, I can't get over how awesome this book was.

It's amazing to me when an author can take a story that we already know the end to and make it riveting. (No pun intended.) The voices that the author uses throughout the boo
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
I began reading this novel in verse on the 100th anniversary of the Titanic's sinking, and I couldn't put it down. Wolf takes some of the real people from the tragedy and brings their voices to life, thereby telling the story through the eyes and views of many. He even personifies the iceberg, and gives it a story to tell--a tale of fate, of a predator lurking for its prey. While reading, I felt as if I were there, and anxiously wondered who would survive and who wouldn't. I knew the fate of som ...more
Anthony Manna
Dec 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Part historical fiction and part documentary, The Watch That Ends the Night tells the story of the RMS Titanic's celebrated maiden voyage on April 10, 1912, and its sudden tragic demise on April 15, when it collided at night with an iceberg. Told in mostly free verse poems through the voices of passengers, on-board rats, the iceberg, and, from the very beginning in a poignant flashforward, an undertaker on his way by boat to the scene of the sinking where he eventually faces the gruesome task of ...more
Apr 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jamie Poorman

APA Citation: Wolf, A. (2011). The Watch that Ends the Night. [Audio recording]. Grand Haven, MI: Brilliance Audio.

Genre: Poetry

Format: Audiobook (9 discs, 10 hrs, 11 minutes)

Awards: 2012 Audie Award

Selection Process: Booklist starred review, Kirkus review

The story of the Titanic is one that has been told many times. In anticipation of the one-hundredth anniversary of it’s tragic sinking, many new works were released in 2011 and early 2012. It would seem almost impossible to bring
Wandering Librarians
Everyone knows the story of the sinking of the Titanic, but now you can hear the story in a thoroughly unique way. In the voices of Captain Smith, the lookout, the wireless man, J. J. Astor, a Lebanese immigrant girl, the undertaker who comes to recover the bodies, and many more, characters tell their stories as the Titanic makes its first and only journey.

This was certainly an interesting read. What I found most interesting was getting to hear about things from the perspectives of people who do
Mar 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
There’s something about tragedy that is compelling. I mean, as humans many of us find it impossible to look away from trainwrecks. We are prone to rubbernecking. I’m not really sure why this is. There’s one tragedy above all others that grabs me every single time and that is the sinking of the Titanic. How much of it is influenced by the James Cameron film which was a surprisingly large part of my formative years, I don’t know. Regardless, I found myself very drawn to The Watch That Ends The Nig ...more
Nov 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
The stories and different voices of the people were really interesting and I really enjoyed reading from the different points of views. I loved the way the book flowed from story to story. But as far as being in verse goes, I really wished it was a bit more poetic. An audio book would have been really interesting with this book and hearing the words spoken I feel would add a lot! I was a little skeptical at first when reading because the Titanic stories can be unoriginal sometimes, but this book ...more
This book is amazing.
It is told from the point of view of two dozen people- including a ship rat, the ice berg and many others. It is told in poetry. Honestly, I usually don't like reading poetry, but this was amazing and so fun to read. I loved how Allan Wolf was able to make the terribly sad story of the Titanic end hopeful and bittersweet- amazing.
It also amazing that all the characters are *real*. They really did exist. Allan Wolf must have done an amazing amount of research.
The bits from
Oct 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
This will appeal to the Titanic lovers. I love this writer! Allan Wolf's novel about Lewis and Clark was similar in that many voices tell the story. This is a great one to use for point-of-view.

I did not get many students to read the Lewis and Clark novel, so I don't know how many will actually read this one - but for those who do, it has a lot to offer.

Maybe with the anniversary coming up - more will be interested.

GREAT notes section.
Alexandria Godina
Mar 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, audio
An absolutely incredible audio book. In flipping through the physical book it was also done really uniquely. Teens/kids are obsessed with events like the Titanic and the approach of this book was the whole package, interesting, meaty, touching, hilarious and informative. Any fan of historical fiction or even a wide reader will devour this book.
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Madison County NC...: First read of a local (Asheville) author 1 1 Mar 31, 2020 01:37PM  
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Allan Wolf: educator-writer-musician extraordinaire. He has literally hundreds of poems committed to memory. He is a veteran traveler through all the diverse worlds of poetry--from poetry slams to public schools, salons to saloons. He turns classic poetry into acoustic tunes as the drummer for The Dead Poets band. He put the Oh! in poetry as the educational director for national touring company Po ...more

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