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Salt to the Sea by [Sepetys, Ruta]
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Salt to the Sea Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 771 customer reviews

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Length: 402 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up—With the same lyrical prose, eye for detail, and breath-stopping ability to unfold delicate layers of characterization and theme with skillfully paced revelations, the author of Between Shades of Gray (2011) and Out of the Easy (2013, both Philomel) presents a fictionalized World War II story based on a true tragedy. In alternating narratives, four different teens grapple with the bitter cold, the ever-present danger of falling bombs, and their own dark secrets. There's Joana, a pretty and empathetic Lithuanian nurse who harbors a heavy guilt; Florian, a mysterious young man struggling to hide his true identity; Amelia, a pregnant Polish girl; and Alfred, a sociopathic Nazi sailor with an inferiority complex. Along with a fully realized cast of secondary characters who comprise the small band of refugees slowly making their way through the frozen and battle-scarred Prussian countryside, Joana, Florian, and Amelia are determined to get aboard the Wilhelm Gustloff, a German military ship evacuating civilians and wounded soldiers at the tail end of the war. Alfred, meanwhile, a low-ranking officer stationed aboard the ship, avoids work by hiding in the toilets, composing imaginary and boastful letters to a girl back home. Each voice is distinct, and Sepetys unwinds their individual backstories slowly and with care. As the relationships among the refugees strengthen and they begin to trust one another, vulnerabilities are revealed—some of them life-threatening. Observations of war and loss, human cruelty, and hatred are unflinching. But through the horror and heartbreak shine rays of hope: love, kindness, courage, and sacrifice. VERDICT Artfully told and sensitively crafted, Sepetys's exploration of this little-known piece of history will leave readers weeping.—Kiera Parrott, School Library Journal

Review

Praise for Salt to the Sea:

"Ruta Sepetys acts as champion of the interstitial people so often ignored — whole populations lost in the cracks of history."—The New York Times

"[A] riveting novel . . . Sepetys skillfully weaves history into her story, here grounding her nuanced characters in the events of winter 1945. Vivid details punctuate the spare prose."—The Washington Post

"Ruta Sepetys is a master of historical fiction. In Salt to the Sea the hard truths of her herculean research are tempered with effortless, intimate storytelling, as her warm and human characters breathe new 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
 
"Brutal. Beautiful. Honest." —Sabaa Tahir, New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes

"Ruta Sepetys is more than just an author — she's history's answer to CSI."—Mashable

"[A] stunning historical novel."—Hypable
 
* "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
  
* "This haunting gem of a novel begs to be remembered, and in turn, it tries to remember the thousands of real people its fictional characters represent. What it asks of us is that their memories, and their stories, not be abandoned to the sea." Booklist, starred review
 
* "Artfully told and sensitively crafted, Sepetys’s exploration of this little-known piece of history will leave readers weeping." School Library Journal, 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
 
"This book includes all the reasons why teens read:  for knowledge, for romance, for amazing and irritating characters.  This novel will break readers’ hearts and then put them back together a little more whole." —VOYA

"Sepetys’s...scene-setting is impeccable; the penetrating cold of the journey is palpable, and she excels at conveying the scope of the losses while giving them a human face....[T]his elegiac tale succeeds with impressive research, affecting characters, and keen, often unsettling insights into humans’ counterposed tendencies toward evil and nobility. Readers will be left to discuss which impulse triumphs here." —The Horn Book

Product details

  • File Size: 2301 KB
  • Print Length: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel Books (February 2, 2016)
  • Publication Date: February 2, 2016
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00YM34WM8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,944 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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