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Titanic: Voices From the Disaster

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  3,727 ratings  ·  620 reviews
Critically acclaimed nonfiction author Deborah Hopkinson pieces together the story of the TITANIC and that fateful April night, drawing on the voices of survivors and archival photographs.

Scheduled to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the tragic sinking of the TITANIC, a topic that continues to haunt and thrill readers to this day, this book by critically acclaimed au
Hardcover, 289 pages
Published April 1st 2012 by Scholastic Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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Barb Middleton
I grew up in the Land of 10,000 Frozen Lakes. In Minnesota, it oozes cold. I thought I KNEW cold. But I found out I didn't when I decided to jump off a sailboat into Lake Superior. Whooee, I was so unprepared for air whooshing out of my lungs when I hit the water. Imagine a big block of ice being dropped onto your chest. The water temperature was in the 50's and my teeth were chattering and blue within a short amount of time. Thank goodness I had a life jacket on. The coldness was paralyzing. Th ...more
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
This is an excellent resource for young adults to learn about the sinking of the Titanic. It is very complete while being succinct. The text covers the entire voyage from the day it left dry dock, through the short journey up the coast to when it set off across the Atlantic, the disaster and the aftermath, including impact on the world immediately after that and finally a little about the discovery of the wreck. I found just the right amount of information, not too much, not too little. The coup ...more
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Variety is a hallmark of Deborah Hopkinson's work for young readers. She's written novels, picture books, biographies, and historical nonfiction, and each have been lauded as quality literature. But it was Titanic: Voices From the Disaster that earned Deborah Hopkinson a Sibert Honor as one of "the most distinguished informational" books of 2012, cementing her status as a premier children's nonfiction author. Ms. Hopkinson elaborated on aspects of the Titanic tragedy that aren't always noted, sc ...more
Apr 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ls-583
Titanic: Voices from the Disaster
Name: Danielle Autumn Shur
Hopkinson, D. (2012). Titanic: Voices from the Disaster. New York, NY: Scholastic Press.
Genre: Informational
Award: YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults Award
Format: Print Book
Selection Process: YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults Award list
Say the word ‘Titanic’ and most everyone will know what you are referring to. Just over 100 years ago, the most famous maritime disasters occurred. Books have been writte
Feb 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-hardback, school
Read the full reivew and exclusive author guest post at

I have always been interested by the dramatic story of the sinking of the Titanic. And as a history buff,this book appealed to me on so many levels. I love that Deborah Hopkinson used real photos of the ship and it's passengers as well as first hand accounts. The narrative came alive for me in a way that it never has before thanks to a visually and historically rich account of that fateful night. Ther
Liza Wiemer
This is an outstanding non-fiction book filled with first-person accounts and records from the sinking of the Titanic. It follows a number of people including first, second, and third class individuals and staff through a chronological order of events. Some of those people are young adults and it's refreshing to hear their point-of-view. The book has numerous documents including a menu, photos, launch information, letters, facts and figures, and information on the Carpathia, the ship that came t ...more
Audrey Rodriguez
Deborah Hopkinson’s award winning informational text, “Titanic: Voices From the Disaster” explores the tragic sinking of the RMS Titanic in a way that accurately captures both human and historical elements of the event. Hopkinson’s Sibert Medal winner describes the 1912 voyage of the Titanic from the perspectives of multiple different passengers that were aboard the “unsinkable” ship when she struck ice and descended to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. “Titanic: Voices From the Disaster” is a c ...more
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Titanic: Voices from the Disaster is a great book for young readers wanting to learn about what happened on the Titanic. The voices of the people make the book come to life and the information is accurate and authentic. It makes the book more interesting and gives the facts without making it seem like a history lesson. I really liked how the people were from all different classes, cultures, and had different backgrounds. It gave the reader a full view of what is was like on the ship from many di ...more
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Titanic: Voices From the Disaster by Deborah Hopkinson is a good informational text for those interested in learning what happened on the ship. This book allows people to understand what happen during the night the Titanic sank but those who have survived it. The Titanic occurred in 1912 and still one of the talked about events in history, people what to know how the ‘unsinkable’ ship sank early that morning and why more people weren’t saved throughout this event. I feel this is a great book to ...more
Mar 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Name: Kim Deniker

APA Citation: Hopkinson, D. (2012). "Titanic: Voices from the disaster". New York: Scholastic, Inc.

Genre: Historical Fiction and YALSA Choice

The awards received include Booklist, 12/01/2011; Publisher’s Weekly, 2/20/2012; Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, 4/1/2012; Horn Book, 11/1/2012 and 3/1/2012; School Library Journal, 2/1/2012; Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA), 4/1/2012; Kirkus Reviews starred 1/1/2012; Wilson's Children, 10/1/12; Library Media Connection, 5/1/20
Jun 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: informational
I have always been interested in the Titanic and her fateful maiden voyage. I love finding random facts regarding historical events that not everyone may know. I enjoyed this book because of the way Deborah Hopkinson presented the information from the photographs of the ship and the facts regarding the passengers, crew, food, etc. I found that the information presented and how it was presented did make me feel excited to read more about the Titanic and had me wanting to read more into the deep d ...more
Jan 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, history
A "simple" overview with several first-hand accounts from the survivors of the disaster.
Jun 26, 2015 added it
Shelves: twin-texts
Twin Text (Intermediate)

I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912
By Lauren Tarshis
Published 2010

Rationale for Twin Texts Selection

The students are learning about the Titanic. I chose two books to teach about the ocean liner. The fictional book is a historical fiction so all the facts about the Titanic are true but the story and characters are not. This way it teaches about the Titanic with an interesting story to go along with it. The non-fiction book has lots of information that will be ve
Apr 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
I am not a big non-fiction reader, though I do make the occasional exception, especially if the topic happens to be of some interest to me. Ever since I saw 1997’s Titanic by James Cameron, I have been curious about what really happened to the ship. I know that movies embellish a great deal for dramatic effect and I wanted to understand the truth about the sinking of Titanic. It has been several years since I read anything regarding the Titanic, so I was pleased to receive a request to review th ...more
L13F_Jana Wilkening
Nov 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rll520-info-bios
I have always been intrigued by the story of the Titanic. I had heard about this book during a book talk and was so excited to read it for this week. It did not disappoint. This book is an amazing read!

The author combines background information and historical facts and details with real stories and voices of Titanic survivors, as well as those who witnessed the sinking. The book follows the sinking chronologically and weaves in eye-witness accounts, factual blurbs, and primary source documents
I read this book as part of the YALSA’s Nonfiction Award Challenge.

I will start off by saying that this was the book that I was the least excited about for the YALSA’s Nonfiction Award Challenge. Mostly because I know what happened to the Titanic. It sunk. People died. And there is no way that they can change the facts to make a happy ending. And I like happy endings. So, I was a tiny bit disgruntled when I learned that this was one of the books I would need to read. But, I am pleased to say tha
Sep 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I don't have any particular interest in the Titanic disaster, but I found this book riveting. It reminds me of last year's Amelia Lost, in that you know perfectly well how it's going to end, but you're still on the edge of your seat. I really, really wanted them to find more lifeboats, you know?

Hopkinson achieves this effect through her masterful use of primary sources. As the title indicates, much of the text consists of eyewitness accounts from aboard the ill-fated ship. The structure is mainl
Sunday Cummins
Mar 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
“Don’t you know what happens in the end?” My husband could not understand why I wanted to leave the dinner table early to finish this book. Yes, of course, I know the ending, but Hopkinson’s writing had me in its grip – one of the reasons this book was awarded a Sibert Honor Award for Nonfiction 2012. I hesitated in reading this book because I thought it would be primarily biographical and narrative in nature. Turns out – this is very much a blended text with a great deal of non-narrative inform ...more
Ms. Yingling
Jun 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Over the past year there has been a plethora of Titanic books, both fiction and nonfiction, so I wasn't quite in the mood for yet another one. If you feel the same way, please pick up this title even if you don't want to, because it is excellent.

So many of the books concern themselves with the minutiae of the disaster, as does this book, but what I enjoyed most were the Father Brown pictures of details of the ship and life on the ship before it sank. Pictures of the exercise room, descriptions o
Mar 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
• Fiction Text- Titanicat (2008) Crisp-Papp
• Titanicat takes on a different perspective that many of the stories of the titanic don’t take on. This story gives the perspectives of a survivor of the Titanic. This survivor actually never even set sail on the Titanic on its finally voyage. A cat prevented him from staying aboard and ultimately saved his life from preventing him. It pairs nicely with the non-fiction pick of Titanic: Voices from the Disaster because this book gives the experience of
Dec 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I have a confession to make...the story of the Titanic never was one that fascinated me. Of course, I know the major details of the story and learned about it in history classes but I am a huge history nerd (one of my majors in college) and there were always other aspects of history that captured my attention more. Also, I am NOT a fan of the movie starring Leo and Kate and besides Mythbusters proved they both could have fit on the door (, just saying!

Hugh C
Sep 17, 2015 rated it liked it
Form 1 English, section:

Good Reads Review: Summer Reading

In the book Titanic the voices from the disaster by Deborah Hopkinson, the message is to never give up, for example some people gave up by not leaving their room. This story took place on a boat in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. It was during 1912 with a few very cold late April night. One of the protagonist Captain Rostrom is the captain of the tanic he is a very wise and experienced sailor. He was a very proud man and
Clara M.
Sep 12, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 6th-and-form-i
Hopkinson wrote this book to give the reader a firsthand experience of what happened from the point of view of nine survivors. The story of the Titanic has been told many times and many ways, but she wanted the reader to actually feel what it was like to know there is a possibility that you are in your last hour. Hopkinson used interviews from some survivors, a stewardess, a little boy, a teacher, a rich man, a seaman, a senior in high school, and a mother. Although Deborah is telling the story ...more
Feb 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Books about the Titanic, whether fiction or non-fiction, invariably follow the same course, that is chronological, from describing the grandeur of the ship, through to what it was like to stay on it, down the it's last minutes. And inevitably, the same thing always happens to me when I read such books; I get sucked up into how fantastic the ship was that I almost forget what happens in the end. The same ending always comes and I'm left heartbroken.

Titanic: Voices from the Disaster, is a middle-g
Cresta McGowan
This was my update about 1/4 of the way in: "I'm not going to lie...I'm bored. The prose is mundane, the descriptions are limited, and the people discussed so far are not interesting at all. I don't know if it's because I already know so much about this ship that I just feel like I'm re-reading the same information, but right now there is no "voice" in the "Voices From the Disaster." Sometimes I'm in awe of what gets published."

And it did not change:

Absolute boredom - this story has been told so
Marjorie Ingall
A suspense-crammed nail-biter. You forget YOU KNOW HOW THIS ENDS. It's obvious why this story has had so much resonance over the years -- the hubris of calling a ship unsinkable, the fabulousness of some of the passengers compared to the working-guyness of others, the acts of heroism and cowardice in the middle of the night in the freezing cold water. As a feat of reporting, synthesis and editing (it rat-a-tats back and forth between different characters) it's just spectacular. It reminds me of ...more
Jan 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book was a copy received via GoodReads for a review. Thanks!

This is a superb book to introduce young readers to all aspects of the Titanic disaster. It's written in a very readable style, introducing late elementary school and middle school children to the individuals in the disaster in a way that brings them to life.

And yet this book has a ton of information from the sequence of events that happened to mini biographies on the parties involved to data tables with disaster statistics and timetab
Julie Suzanne
Mar 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone curious.
Absolutely fascinating from the beginning to end. Never a dragging moment. I just wish the pictures would have been vivid or somehow a supplement to the text, but I have the internet and the movie for that, I suppose (blasted black-and-white photography). I did cry, a bit, and often I was just so ANGRY about how it all went down. One thing I learned from this book is that in matters that matter, my disposition of compliance needs to be discarded. This obedience, courtesy, and compliance killed m ...more
Tricia Jonell
Aug 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I've read numerous articles about the RMS Titanic because I always find this historical ship fascinating.
I am glad because this book gave me a whole picture about the unforgettable night that killed many passengers. Narratives from the survivors and pictures of the "unsinkable" ship broke my heart.

I've seen the movie about this but, now I can tell that there are still heaps of information that we don't know about this ship. Photos of the ship were taken by Father Frank Browne. Two rich couple of
Reggie Overton
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This non fiction novel focus's on exactly as the title of the story suggests. We are taken back to a period in time, and we explore one of the most tragic events of history that many find most fascinating. The story of the Titanic is brought back to life through this heart felt story by real quotes of survivors and real accounts of events that took place on that faithful night. It is not too complex for our young readers and puts things in comprehensive perspective that they will find enjoyable. ...more
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Did the titanic sink in the Atlantic or Pacific? 2 8 Jan 23, 2017 08:30AM  
Future Teachers, ...: Review #3 1 3 Oct 07, 2016 10:25PM  
OSU Marion 3356 S...: Nnonfiction- Titanic: Voices from the Disaster 1 3 Apr 05, 2016 02:16PM  
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I write picture books, nonfiction, and middle grade fiction. I love history and visiting schools to talk to young readers.

My new books in 2018 include ORDINARY, EXTRAORDINARY JANE AUSTEN, D-DAY: The Invasion that Changed History, WHAT IS THE WOMEN's RIGHTS MOVEMENT? and UNDER THE BODHI TREE. Forthcoming in Spring 2019 is HOW I BECAME A SPY, a middle grade spy novel set in WWII.

Recent awards for p
“The events of the Titanic disaster can be seen as a symbol of what happens through overconfidence in technology, complacence, and a mindset of profits over people's safety.” 3 likes
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