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Librarian, Lornshill Academy

Salt to the Sea

'Salt to the Sea' is a formidable example of YA historical fiction suitable for a much wider audience. Sepytys brings vividly to life a historical event that few know about. I had never heard of the Willhelm Gustloff's sinking before reading this book or that this ship suffered the largest loss of life in maritime history! I came to like this book's use of short chapters, headed with the name of one of the four characters who take it in turns to tell their journey to perceived safety from their perspective. This kept the story interesting and moved it along quickly. Sepytys has the ability as an author to make you care about the fate of her characters except for the odious Alfred who, as she intended, made my skin crawl! Despite knowing the fate of the ship I was, unrealistically, still willing this book to have a happy ending, which had me racing through the book to learn each character's fate! This book vividly brings to life the senseless horrors of war in an environment that was hostile on so many levels. Everything seemed to be against Sepytys' characters, including the weather, yet the indestructible nature of the human spirit shone through time and time again throughout this book. 'Salt to the Sea' is simply a fantastic need to read it!

Posted on: 26th May 2017 at 10:53 am

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