The Drowned and the Saved by Les Wilson
The Drowned and the Saved by Les Wilson

Book review – The Drowned and the Saved: When War Came to the Hebrides

A truly harrowing account, Les Wilson’s book sheds light on the untold Hebridean war experience.

The Drowned and the Saved pays homage to the victims and survivors of two tragic incidents: the sinking of American troop ship Tuscania by a German U-Boat, and the collision of another troop ship with the merchant cruiser Otranto.

The Drowned and the Saved by Les Wilson

Considering the Islay islanders who helped survivors and buried the victims of the tragedies, Wilson’s book tells a tale different to the mainstream frontline recollections we are used to and emphasises the war that was fought at home.

Wilson’s writing has you hooked and he takes time in the first few chapters to contextualise the First World War, making for an unintimidating read.

The Drowned and the Saved: When War Came to the Hebrides, by Les Wilson, published by Birlinn, £12.99.

Scottish Field rating: *****

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