This is a beautiful, moving work of historical fiction about the largest, and one of the least known, maritime disasters in history. Short chapters told from the point of view of each character keeps the book moving swiftly along, and it brings to stark life the realities of how war affects civilians, and the atrocities committed by all parties in World War Two. Sepetys continues her tradition of writing great books about little known chapters of history, and this may be her best yet.
During the Second World War, the Russians torpedoed and sunk the Wilhelm Gustloff with 10,582 passengers on board. More than 9400 died in the cold Baltic Sea, including 5000 children. This little-known maritime disaster is impeccably researched and viscerally conveyed through the stories of four adults, slowly revealed in alternating chapters in Sepetys’ haunting historical fiction. Why do we read about disasters? Perhaps to illumine our character—our most base and our best tendencies. And because it is important here, as well, to not forget. Ages 14 & up.
New York Times Bestseller "Masterfully crafted"--The Wall Street Journal For readers of Between Shades of Gray and All the Light We Cannot See, bestselling author Ruta Sepetys returns to WWII in this epic novel that shines a light on one of the war's most devastating--yet unknown--tragedies.
World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, many with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer to safety. Just when it seems freedom is within their grasp, tragedy strikes. Not country, nor culture, nor status matter as all ten thousand people--adults and children alike--aboard must fight for the same thing: survival. Told in alternating points of view and perfect for fans of Anthony Doerr's Pulitzer Prize-winning All the Light We Cannot See, Erik Larson's Dead Wake, and Elizabeth Wein's Printz Honor Book Code Name Verity, this masterful work of historical fiction is inspired by the real-life tragedy that was the sinking of theWilhelm Gustloff--the greatest maritime disaster in history. As she did in Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys unearths a shockingly little-known casualty of a gruesome war, and proves that humanity and love can prevail, even in the darkest of hours. Praise for Salt to the Sea Featured on NPR's Morning Edition ♦ "Superlative...masterfully crafted... a] powerful work of historical fiction."--The Wall Street Journal ♦ " Sepetys is] a master of YA fiction...she once again anchors a panoramic view of epic tragedy in perspectives that feel deeply textured and immediate."--Entertainment Weekly ♦ "Riveting...powerful...haunting."--The Washington Post ♦ "Compelling for both adult and teenage readers."--New York Times Book Review ♦ "Intimate, extraordinary, artfully crafted...brilliant."--Shelf Awareness ♦ "Historical fiction at its very, very best."--The Globe and Mail♦ " H]aunting, heartbreaking, hopeful and altogether gorgeous...one of the best young-adult novels to appear in a very long time."--Salt Lake Tribune ♦ *"This haunting gem of a novel begs to be remembered."--Booklist ♦ *"Artfully told and sensitively crafted...will leave readers weeping."--School Library Journal ♦ A PW and SLJ 2016 Book of the Year Praise for Between Shades of Gray A New York Times Notable Book ♦ A Wall Street Journal Best Children's Book ♦ A PW, SLJ, Booklist, and Kirkus Best Book ♦ iTunes 2011 Rewind Best Teen Novel ♦ A Carnegie Medal and William C. Morris Finalist ♦ A New York Times and International Bestseller ♦ "Few books are beautifully written, fewer still are important; this novel is both."--The Washington Post ♦ *" A]n important book that deserves the widest possible readership."--Booklist
About the Author
Ruta Sepetys (www.rutasepetys.com) was born and raised in Michigan in a family of artists, readers, and music lovers. She is the award-winning, bestselling author of Between Shades of Gray and Out of the Easy. Ruta lives with her family in Nashville, Tennessee. Follow her on Twitter at @RutaSepetys.