I selected Salt to the Sea for the first of my Dewey’s Readathon Bonus rolls New Orleans 21 Salt to the Sea has a picture of the sea on the cover.
I’ve made no secret of being Jewish, and I’m of an age that many of my Hebrew School teacher were Survivors of Hitler’s quest to annihilate the Jews. So I was steeped in the Shoah narrative from an early age.
As she did for Between Shades of Grey, Ruta Sepetys has mined her family history to remind us of how many other tragedies occurred during the Second World War. The chaotic events that culminate in the sinking of the Wilhelm Gustloff are told by the closely interwoven stories of 4 young adults
- Joana – a Lithuanian refugee with some medical training
- Friedrich – a German civilian boy struggling to hide his identity and purpose
- Emelia – a pregnant Polish girl
- Albert – an odious German soldier
The extremely short chapters should be choppy, but instead the weave together into a dischordant whole. I don’t know whether I enjoyed Salt to the Sea, but I was compelled, almost driven to keep reading until the tragic conclusion.