Disappointing analysis of a major event
With a title like this, one would expect a lot from Triangle, and it is - at points - a very compelling book. The description of the shirt-waist factory fire, which killed about 145 people (mostly young, Jewish women) and was the greatest workplace disaster in New York history until 9/11, is devastating. The fire - which as a poor student of history I'd never heard of - lead to major changes in terms of shifting power towards labor and away from business (at least in relative terms). For me, that was the reason I bought the book, to find out what impact this fire had on the country...and author David Von Drehle sort of punts on that aspect. He covers this, to be sure, but the book is more about the immediate events leading up to the fire, and the trial that followed. Discussions of the actual impact are nominal, and that's a disappointment. The book is good, to be sure, but it wasn't what the title led me to believe it would be, and in the end, I'm not sure I could recommend it.