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Izzy, Northampton Academy

Salt to the Sea

I have now finished all the shortlisted books and I think that I saved the best until last with reading Salt to the sea.
From the very beginning, this book had me hooked and I just couldn't put it down! It is written from four people's perspectives; Alfred, who is serving Germany, Joana, who is from Lithuania, Emilia, a polish girl, and Florian, who is Prussian. Being set around World War two, this wouldn’t be a book that I'd usually pick up. However, I enjoyed it a lot. I think that loads of research must have gone into creating this book and subsequently I have learnt a lot about World War two.
The characterizations were really good and I ended up warming towards Florian. It was also interesting to see how Florian developed and began to trust Joana towards the end. Alternatively, I hated Alfred!
The plot was well constructed and I liked how most of the book was the journey towards the sea and the ships that would carry the refugees. The events which took place were much unexpected which I liked and I found myself to be gasping throughout.
Because this book is written from four different perspectives, it did become a little confusing at times and I did have to flick back through it occasionally. I liked how the four people were in the same environment of World War two but different situations which gave me a greater understanding.
One thing about this book, the last chapter written by Emilia I didn't understand because of what had happened prior to this. However, I loved how the last part was in the form of a letter. I would also really like to know the ending to Florian's story as I feel this was left out because of the massive plot change at the end.
Overall, Salt to the Sea is a great book which I would definitely recommend to everyone –it's also my winner for the Carnegie Medal this year and I hope the judges think this too!

Posted on: 13th June 2017 at 06:06 pm

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