This is a tale that spans three generations, as well as the Atlantic.
Fact and fiction cross lines throughout the book. During this book I felt compelled to go online and search out some of the characters and storylines. I didn’t know for example that the only statue of Captain Smith is located in Litchfield which is just north of Birmingham. Why there? We do get an answer, but is it true?
The story also includes other famous figures like the ‘unsinkable’ Molly Brown. Her part in this story takes us along the route of the suffragettes, and the struggle for woman to have a voice and an opinion. There really are so many interesting characters, and quite a few story lines entwined throughout. These days we don’t hold strict values about class, back then the divide between rich and poor was vast.
I feel the author has completed her task well. This is such a tragic tale we needed the book to be written with feeling. Leah fleming has achieved this for me.
I can’t really imagine how a person’s dreams can be completely shattered as they would have been after that terrible night. The author writes in a way that helps us to visualise how lives can also be rebuilt, and life goes on, even if not fully. I think we would all carry scars that would be difficult to heal had we lived through that terrifying night in April 1912.
On the positive side, the story shows us how relationships can be built with sometimes very fragile foundations, some of these would last a lifetime, and we learn that good things can come out of bad.
A thoroughly worthwhile read.