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Salt to the Sea cover art

Salt to the Sea

By: Ruta Sepetys
Narrated by: Jorjeana Marie, Will Damron, Cassandra Morris, Michael Crouch
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Summary

New York Times best seller! For fans of Between Shades of Gray and All the Light We Cannot See, best-selling author 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 10,000 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 Gustloff - the 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.

©2016 Ruta Sepetys (P)2016 Listening Library

Critic reviews

“Jorjeana Marie, Will Damron, Cassandra Morris, and Michael Crouch perform mesmerizing narration worthy of Sepetys’s spectacular novel. Verdict Libraries with even the most limited audio budgets will want to invest.” (School Library Journal, starred review)

“The talented narrators excel in capturing the tone of their characters...[They] work together to create a vivid and well-rounded reading experience, [and] bring forth the truth of the wartime experience.” (Booklist, starred review)

“The four narrators (Jorjeana Marie, Will Damron, Cassandra Morris and Michael Crouch) are superbly cast...The story’s plot and pacing translate beautifully to the audio medium.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

What listeners say about Salt to the Sea

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  • Overall
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wow, not frightening. Good, believeable story.

I'm studying children's literature and this was the last Carnegie prize winner. It's a very good book, and despite the stories context it isn't gratuitous of the horrors. I was expecting to be traumatised, but came away feeling as though it was simply a real story, with real people. This might be because my father's side fled Poland, so I am aware already that individuals are just individuals, no matter their origin, we just seem to be born as ourselves, no matter what. But yeah, poetic, not imposing, realistic, but approachable, an experience, but in no way forced. Really well written and informative without being overt about the real events of WWII, without being boring, and without being gory-led. There is real horror in this book though, don't be mistaken, but it isn't glorified or made to feel sensational. Even though it is truly a sensational human story. Highly recommended to those who have a history in the family. Touching ending. Doesn't shy away from the dark realities. Love is also included. beautiful, in it's own way. Un-forced.

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Sad but necessary listen. Great story.

A very interesting account of having to flee in WW2. It’s always the civilians who get caught up in the tragedies and this is very youth based. Very well written, telling the story through different eyes.
A great listen, compelling and sad in places but so so necessary to know.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Beautiful but heartbreaking

Brilliantly composed story from a multitude of view points. Story, characters and performance all felt incredibly authentic. Harrowing insight into a part of WW2 I know very little about.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Incredible tale of humanity at it's best and worst

If you could sum up Salt to the Sea in three words, what would they be?

Wonderful, heartbreaking and honest.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The final scenes are heartbreaking but justified. It never felt like the author was writing a story, rather she was narrating someone else's.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great book - average production

I thought the decision to use actors with very strong (rather grating) American accents an odd one given the emphasis in the book given to the characters' disparate backgrounds. However that's partly person preference.

However what really really irritated was at least two of the actors pronouncing 'buoyed' as 'boo-eeyed' as if they'd never hear the word said aloud before. Definitely the kind of detail that should be picked up during the production process.

Great story though.

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Hauntingly beautiful

Exquisitely written this story of displacement and the fight for survival of those tragically irreversibly affected by WWII

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Loved it. Even teared-up at times.

Loved it. Effective story that can bring a tear to your eye. It did to mine. I enjoyed the style of writing. Bringing the introduction back into the conclusion to connect it all nicely. Overall listening to it kind of makes me want to read it too. Narration was great with different readers and truly good annotations. Yet being such an emotional piece I would love to read some parts and sit and stir with the thoughts they gave me. I know I could have paused the audio to do so, this was my first audiobook and suppose I will just have to get used to the story moving on when I'm not ready to move with it. It was still a great listen but for the type of reader I am I would probably pick up the actual book as well.

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A truly 5* book

Would you listen to Salt to the Sea again? Why?

Yes. I listened to the book twice. It was like I didn't want to let go of the characters

What was one of the most memorable moments of Salt to the Sea?

The ending had me in tears

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The sinking of the ship was so dramatic. I felt I was with the people all the way.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me cry especially at the end. I was sad and yet happy that at least one person had got home to rest in peace.

Any additional comments?

This was a wonderful story. I know the main characters were fictional but the truth of what happened to so many ofl these people has been kept quiet all these years. Such a well written book. I have recommended it to others,

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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sepetys spectacular

ww2 story if well researched and well used. I'm not too sure I like multiple POV to lisent to, reading the book this was not an issue but when listening it is a more disjointed aspect.

Characters are fantastic and so thoughtfully crafted. excellent.

the story is outstanding and wonderfully imagined. thank you.

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Excellent!

I loved this book so much such a brilliant story so well described and written❤️

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