Books: Tides of War

A trio of strong thrillers

For a few heady peacetime years, the Normandie was the most magnificent ship afloat. The dining room, it was boasted, was longer and more lustrous than the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles. But when the French liner burned and capsized at its Manhattan dock in 1942, it was not so much its beauty that was mourned as the loss of one of the fastest passenger ships ever built, then being refitted as an Allied troop transport that could outrun any U-boat. In Normandie Triangle (Arbor House; 475 pages; $13.95), Novelist Justin Scott evokes the grace and power...

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