Today I was asked to describe the difference between the two upcoming Titanic books, "A Report Into the Loss of the SS Titanic: A Centennial Reappraisal" by Sam Halpern et. al., and "On a Sea of Glass" by Kent Layton, Tad Fitch and Bill Wormstedt. I'm one of the co-authors of the first book and have proofread the manuscript of the second, so here is my brief description of the two works.
Sam's book is a dispassionate description of the maiden voyage and sinking written from a technical standpoint, and it addresses each of the numbered questions that the British inquiry posed for itself to answer. (However, our answers are based on a century's worth of additional evidence that has come to light since 1912.) The book contains a number of appendices that address specific controversial or unresearched topics (e.g. locked gates), and it also contains a separate chronology describing (as accurately as is humanly possible) the exact time of all of the main events that occurred during the maiden voyage and sinking. The chronology has been cross-checked and analyzed by all of the contributing co-authors and has been fully sourced with footnotes, and I doubt if a more accurate chronology of the Titanic's maiden voyage will ever be put together by anyone.
The book written by Kent, Tad and Bill is a more "personalized" account of the maiden voyage and (like "A Night to Remember") tells the story as it was experienced by the passengers and crewmen themselves (although it utilizes the stories of many passengers and crewmen who have gone almost unnoticed in other published works.) The book contains a nice selection of appendices addressing various enigmas associated with the disaster, and its chronology of the sinking agrees almost perfectly with the chronology that was developed for Sam's book (which Bill and Tad also contributed to.) Indeed, I think the two books will be marvelous companion volumes to each other and that they'll join Steve Hall's "Titanic in Photographs" as being the top three Titanic books in 2012.
(In my humble opinion, anyway....)