Death in the Baltic Sea – The Sinking Of The Wilhelm Gusloff

jacketA maritime tragedy whose story has been long buried has been recently brought to life by award winning writer Cathryn J. Prince. American author Prince’s new novel ‘Death in the Baltic: The World War II Sinking of the Wilhelm Gusloff’ was published by Palgrave Macmillan on 9th April 2013 and relies upon first hand accounts of those few remaining survivors and unearthed previous ignored records.

In January 1945 the cruise liner The Wilhelm Gusloff set sail in the cover of darkness from the German held Polish sea port of Gotenhafen on the south coast of the Baltic Sea, only to be torpedoed by a Soviet submarine and sunk just before dawn, never reaching her intended destination of Kiel, Germany. Cathryn has recorded in her novel that some 10,000 German refugee wounded soldiers and civilians lost their lives in the freezing waters of the Baltic Sea in their ill fated attempt to flee a failing Nazi Germany before the fast approaching Soviet Army reached their homes. Through her writing Cathryn has been able to transmit the human and personal tragedy of this event, over looked for more than 65 years due to the shadow of Germany’s role in the Second World War.

Cathryn J. Prince won the Connecticut Press Club’s 2011 Book Award for non-fiction for her book ‘A Professor, a President, and a Meteor: The Birth of American Science. She is also the author of ‘Shot from the Shy: American POWs in Switzerland’ and ‘Burn the Town and Sack the Banks: Confederates Attack Vermont!’

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