Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Salt to the Sea

By Ruta Sepetys

  • Release Date: 2016-02-02
  • Category: Historical
4.5 Score: 4.5 (From 183 Ratings)

Brief Description

New York Times Bestseller and winner of the Carnegie Medal! "Masterfully crafted"The Wall Street Journal

For readers of Between Shades of Gray and All the Light We Cannot See, 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 the Wilhelm Gustloffthe 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 PWSLJ, 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

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Customer reviews

  • Amazing

    5
    By Miss viper
    I loved the switching of perspective and I really thought it enhanced the story. The problems of the characters were real and the characters were compelling but flawed just enough to make them human and relatable. The world needs to know of this tragedy and the number of souls that it took from this world. They also need to know about selfishness of some and what at selfishness caused them. (Spoilers read on at your own risk) The one thing I thought could have been better was Emilia's last chapter after we can come to the conclusion that she has died. In the chapter she speaks about her daughter (about 5-6 at the time) Halinka and other family members or friends that have died or she has been separated from. You can interpret it that Emilia is dead and this is her Heaven or she is on the verge of death and is dreaming/hallucinating it all. Other than that I give this a ten out of ten for its compelling characters and interesting plot. I thought it was wonderfully written and the changing of perspective and how different all of the character traits were was refreshing. It brought a new modern light on a old tragedy the world has forgotten and left behind in its past.
  • Amazing😱

    5
    By fjctjnik
    This needs to made into a movie!!!!!
  • brilliant

    5
    By mockinjay4
    this book was so amazing
  • Salt to the Sea

    5
    By Barb1927
    An outstanding book; every page held my interest. So well written.
  • Gorgeous and Heartbreaking

    5
    By Sansteph234852189
    An emotional and suspenseful read. The author's words reach out and grip the reader's heart, not letting go until the very end.
  • Beautifully written

    5
    By iluvlorax
    Read it in one night, beautifully written. Like many other readers had never heard of this nautical disaster till I read the book. Appreciated how much research Sepetys put into the novel. Left me searching for more details about Gustloff, Prussia and the Baltics during WWII. Highly recommend it.
  • Excellent Book

    5
    By Nicolle1971
    Must read in my book. A perfect mix of fiction and history. I appreciate the authors closing facts and documentation concerning this tragedy. I would highly recommend.
  • Love the perspective but ending was a little shaky

    4
    By Aka bug
    Having four people talk in this book was very different at first but once you know everyone's background, it's quite easy to follow. This also shows many different sides of war. The details this story unfolds about the war is remarkable and provides so much insight as to what really happened. I have to say though I did not like the ending as how it was abrupt. Other than that I loved the book and its history. I also loved how since four people were telling the story the chapters are very short. Usually only 1-2 pages which keeps you reading. I would definitely recommend this to anyone.
  • Amazing read

    5
    By katiepitzman
    Heartbreakingly captivating. It's base in history and fact makes it a book to remember.
  • My favorite book!

    5
    By Brittany _sos_
    Honestly this book is better then the fault in our stars 😍 and I love that book soooo much I read 30 last year and this one is the best #booknerd 🤓

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