The Ocean Liner

The Ocean Liner

Book - 2018
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As war engulfs Europe, 1,500 passengers risk everything to find a brighter future. Cousins Masha and Rachel Morgenstern board the luxury liner the SS Manhattan bound for New York, desperate to escape the concentration camps that claimed the rest of their family. America offers a safe haven, but to reach it they must survive a hazardous Atlantic crossing. Among their fellow passengers fleeing the war, each with their own conflicts, secrets and surprises, are the composer Igor Stravinsky, making a new start after a decade of tragedy, and Rose Kennedy, determined to keep her four children from harm. Particularly worrying to Rose is her daughter Rosemary, a vivacious but troubled woman whose love for a Californian musician may derail her family's political ambitions. And then there's young Thomas, a Nazi with a secret... But, under the waves, the Manhattan is being stalked by a German U-boat. Will any of those aboard the ocean liner ever achieve their dream of a new life in America?
Publisher: Seattle : Lake Union Publishing, [2018]
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9781477805145
1477805141
Characteristics: 367 pages ; 21 cm

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r
ryner
May 10, 2018

It's 1939, and the ocean liner SS Manhattan is carrying a diverse and crowded load of passengers from the increasingly threatening Nazi war machine. The narrative alternates among a number of passengers, including Jewish cousins Masha and Rachel Morgenstern, Russian composer Igor Stravinsky, the Kennedy family, philandering Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini, and teenage German Thomas König, as well as the sailors lurking beneath the Atlantic in German submarine U-113.

The author makes clear that this is strictly a work of fiction, though inspired by several real events. I found it difficult to put down, and it has also inspired me to read more about a number of the peripheral characters, especially Rosemary Kennedy, whose suffering is heart-wrenching. Highly recommended for summer/beach reading!

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