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.— Flannery
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.— Ga
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 critically acclaimed #1 "New York Times" bestseller"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 the"Wilhelm 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 can prevail, even in the darkest of hours.Praise for"Salt to the Sea"
"Ruta Sepetys is a master of historical fiction. In "Salt to the Sea" the hard truths of her herculean research are tempered with effortless, intimatestorytelling, as her warm and human charactersbreathenew life into one of the world's most terrible and neglected tragedies." Elizabeth Wein, "New York Times" bestselling author of Printz Award Honor Book "Code Name Verity"
A rich, page-turning story that brings to vivid life a terrifying and little-known moment in World War II history. Steve Sheinkin, author of Newbery Honor and National Book Award finalist "Bomb"
* "Sepetys excels in shining light on lost chapters of history, and this visceral novel proves a memorable testament to strength and resilience in the face of war and cruelty." "Publishers Weekly, "starred review
"The inevitability of the ending (including the loss of several characters) doesn't change its poignancy, and the short chapters and slowly revealed back stories for each character guarantee the pages keep turning. Heartbreaking, historical, and a little bit hopeful." "Kirkus"
Praise for "Between Shades of Gray"
A"New York Times"Notable Book of 2011
A"Wall Street Journal"Best Children's Book of 2011
A"Publishers Weekly"Best Book of 2011
The iTunes 2011 Rewind Best Teen Novel
A"School Library Journal"Best Book of 2011
A"Booklist"Best Book of 2011
A"Kirkus"Best Book of 2011
2012 Indies Choice Young Adult Book of the Year
A Carnegie Medal Finalist
A William C. Morris Finalist
A"New York Times"Bestseller
An International Bestseller
Few books are beautifully written, fewer still are important; this novel is both. "The Washington Post"
* A harrowing page-turner. "Publishers Weekly," starred review
* A gripping story. "School Library Journal," starred review
* Bitterly sad, fluidly written Sepetys' flowing prose gently carries readers. "Kirkus," starred review
* "Beautifully written and deeply felt an important book that deserves the widest possible readership. Booklist, starred review
Stalin deported and murdered millions, but he could not destroy the seeds of memory, compassion, and art that they left behind. From those seeds, Ruta Septeys has crafted a brilliant story of love and survival that will keep their memory alive for generations to come. Laurie Halse Anderson, bestselling author of"Speak"and"Wintergirls"
In terrifying detail, Ruta Sepetys re-creates World War II coming of age all too timely today. Between Shades of Gray is a document long overdue. Richard Peck, Newbery Award winning author of"A Year Down Yonder"
"Between Shades of Gray" is a story of astonishing force. I feel grateful for a writer like Ruta Sepetys who bravely tells the hard story of what happens to the innocent when world leaders and their minions choose hate and oppression. Beautiful and unforgettable. Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Newbery Honor winning author of"Hitler Youth"
"From the Hardcover edition.