Tag Archives: Richard Brown

Look What’s in the Warner Library!

Warner Library serves Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow. Visit your own local library and see what gems you can unearth

(2013-09-22 001Title: Voyage of the Iceberg: the Story of the Iceberg that Sank the Titanic

Author: Richard Brown

Publication Information: New York: Beaufort Books, 1983

ISBN: 0-825-301-874 (i.e. 978-0-82530-187-2)

Library of Congress Classification: GB2595

Dewey Decimal Classification: 551.34

Library of Congress Subject Headings:
Arctic regions

I came across this book wandering in the library stacks. Having read it many years ago, I really liked it, so I decided to pass on my experience.

I used to describe this book as about the sinking of the Titanic from the iceberg’s point of view, but the Titanic plays a small part in the story. The book is about how an iceberg is created in the far north, only Brown selects the most famous iceberg in history to tell the story. Icebergs are created from calving in Greenland. The Atlantic currents carry them down the North American coast, passing Labrador and down to the Great Banks, where this iceberg encounters the Titanic.

As the iceberg travels, we are told what the iceberg “sees” going on along the shore. Cultures, animals, explorers–and some history–is what we learn about as the iceberg travels down to its encounter with fame–er, imfamy. It’s history of the area as well as natural history which, if you like to learn new things, you will find this book of interest.

The book is only 152 pages. Some might not like it, but it is an easy read, and I thought it was a hoot.

Richard Brown, Titanic with Zombies

Title: Titanic with Zombies

Author: Richard Brown

Publication Information: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

ISBN: 1-479-20-739-X (i.e. 978-1-479-207-39-8)

Library of Congress Subject Headings:
Titanic (Steamship)—Fiction
Shipwrecks—North Atlantic Ocean—Fiction

Okay, this is a cute book. It’s not a great book, but it is enjoyable.

I read this book on my Kindle. The drawings of the characters, especially the zombies, adds to the fun. Richard Brown wrote an interesting slant on the sinking of the Titanic—that while the ship sank, a plague broke out on the ship that the infected died and returned as zombies.

How do zombies end up on the ship? A poor, young Irish woman is infected by someone on the dock; he injects her with the virus before she boards the ship. She chases her attacker but he gets away. This is the most improbable part of the plot—who developed the virus, why and to what end—is never really explained. Also, the book ends with Charles Lightoller, the highest-ranking officer to survive the sinking, in London on the witness stand at the British Board of Trade inquiry. Big surprise that he has no plans to mention the zombies.

The prose is somewhat irritating in spots. Having written stories (unpublished) years ago, I used to do this as well. The following passage is one I bookmarked because it stood out:

“The water was up to his [Lightoller’s] waist now, and so cold he felt like he was wearing a pair of ice undies. If he didn’t get moving soon, he might never be able to have any more children, or worse yet, see the ones he already had ever again.”

Ice undies? Lightoller thinks of this while trying to escape a bunch of zombies as the ship sinks and he’s on a water-filling deck. One Amazon.com critic called this a “rolling of the eyes moment,” and I did.

Lots of historical figures known to be on the ship appear: Lightoller, Margaret Brown, Thomas Andrews, Madeline Astor, John Jacob Astor IV, Captain E. J. Smith—to name a few. One problem I did have is that some of the corpses that were found floating in the Atlantic were still moving although dead. The temperature of the North Atlantic Ocean at that time of year is below freezing; could a frozen zombie move? Perhaps more accurately, how could a frozen zombie move? This is splitting hairs, since we know that there are no zombies, after all, how could desiccated bodies even stand let alone walk? Also, if they could move, this means that the zombies were still able to infect the living who were pulling them out of the drink. (Sequel?)

It cost me 99 cents. It was a quick read and fun. Another Amazon critic could not finish reading the book because of the gore. Who in their right mind buys a book with zombies on the cover and does not expect blood, biting, disembowelments, eating of flesh and all the rest?