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Salt to the Sea

Salt to the Sea 1

by Ruta Sepetys
Publication Date: 16/05/2016
5/5 Rating 1 Reviews
RRP  $19.99 $17.25

**Winner 2017 CILIP Carnegie Medal**

It's early 1945 and a group of people trek across Germany, bound together by their desperation to reach the ship that can take them away from the war-ravaged land. Four young people, each haunted by their own dark secret, narrate their unforgettable stories. Fans of The Book Thief or Helen Dunmore's The Siege will be totally absorbed.

This inspirational novel is based on a true story from the Second World War. When the German ship the Wilhelm Gustloff was sunk in port in early 1945 it had over 9000 civilian refugees, including children, on board. Nearly all were drowned. Ruta Sepetys, acclaimed author of Between Shades of Grey, brilliantly imagines their story.

About the Author
Ruta Sepetys is the author of acclaimed YA novel, Between Shades of Grey. Born and raised in Michigan in a family of Lithuanian descent, Ruta now lives with her husband in Tennessee. Ruta was a highly successful promoter of classical music concerts, booking and touring with orchestras worldwide, before turning to writing full-time. In 2015 Ruta has been awarded The Rockefeller Foundation's prestigious Bellagio Center writing residency, where she will interact with other leading international artists, writers and thinkers.

General fiction (Children's / Teenage)
Publication Date:
Penguin Books, Limited
Country of origin:
United Kingdom
Dimensions (mm):
Ruta Sepetys

Ruta Sepetys was born and raised in Michigan in a loving houshold, enjoyed her school years and bravely stepped into the world when she left home for Paris, France to live and work.

She has her roots in a completely different medium, that of music and It was only when she visited relatives in Lithuania that she discovered a family history that was seemingly hidden, and realised that there was a personal story to tell of a cataclysmic event in European history that is not commonly known.

Between Shades of Gray is a story that is both poignant and extraordinary. It is both difficult to read, because it is so painful and so personal, and also uplifting - to discover the joy and spirit of the Lithuanian people.

Ruta Sepetys now lives in Tennessee with her family, enjoys their company and that of her friends and is passionate about the arts and truth.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating

5 / 5 (1 Ratings)
  • A harrowing and beautiful WWII tale

    by on

    I think this book is very deserving of my 5 star rating. Ruta Sepetys has once again enlightened me to a part of WWII that I had no idea about. In Between Shades of Gray it was the Lithuanian deportations to work camps in Siberia. This time, Salt to the Sea brings to light the biggest maritime disaster in history -- the sinking of the German ship Wilhelm Gustloff resulting in a death count six times higher than the Titanic. The ship was carrying mostly war refugees and about 5000 of those that died were children. Total number of deaths: 9343. It's crazy that an event of this size can so easily slip under the radar of history and I'm really glad that I know about it now.

    The novel itself is gripping and it's hard to look away. Indeed, I read Salt to the Sea in a single day. The chapters are extremely short, mostly just a couple of pages, and this keeps the plot moving. Each chapter is dedicated to one of the four protagonists so the perspective does switch frequently but this didn't bother me at all. I found every single character, even the secondary ones, to be charming in their own way. I love them all! (Except one. I'm looking at you Alfred you big weirdo).

    I honestly can't think of a single bad thing to write about this book. It was horrifying and beautiful and it captivated me from start to finish.