“Sometimes, when our feelings for the dead are very, very strong, it keeps them tied to us. It prevents them from moving on to the next world.”
Rating: 2/5 stars
Thank you G.P. Putnam’s Sons for a review copy in exchange for a honest review!
Someone, or something, is haunting the Titanic.
This is the only way to explain the series of misfortunes that have plagued the passengers of the ship from the moment they set sail: mysterious disappearances, sudden deaths. Now suspended in an eerie, unsettling twilight zone during the four days of the liner’s illustrious maiden voyage, a number of the passengers – including millionaires Madeleine Astor and Benjamin Guggenheim, the maid Annie Hebbley and Mark Fletcher – are convinced that something sinister is going on . . . And then, as the world knows, disaster strikes.
Years later and the world is at war. And a survivor of that fateful night, Annie, is working as a nurse on the sixth voyage of the Titanic’s sister ship, the Britannic, now refitted as a hospital ship. Plagued by the demons of her doomed first and near fatal journey across the Atlantic, Annie comes across an unconscious soldier she recognises while doing her rounds. It is the young man Mark. And she is convinced that he did not – could not – have survived the sinking of the Titanic . . .
So this was…something else. I don’t want to say that I’m fascinated by the sinking of the Titanic because we’re talking about the one of the worst cruise ship disasters in history but I’ve always found the events and circumstances leading up to it’s sinking so interesting. Therefore, I knew A LOT surrounding the tragedy before picking up this book, including the characters (who were real life passengers) that are aboard the RMS Titanic in this book. I’ve also watched the movie Titanic more times than I would ever like to admit but that’s besides the point. Needless to say, I was STOKED to pick this up because of my interest and the fact that there is a supernatural twist in this story. And I’m not going to lie I thought this book was going to be a four star read but then the ending happened and here we are.
What I Liked
🔥Slow burn story. For a good portion of this book it was all the right amounts of revealing just enough information to keep readers interested and wanting to continue the story without feeling too rushed or too slow. The keyword there is “good portion” though.
🕐 Dual timelines. I really liked that this was told from both the sailing of the Titanic and the Britannic, it made for a much more interesting story. If this was just told from Annie’s POV while she was on the Britannic recalling the events that happened on the Titanic I don’t think it would have nearly been as impactful.
🙅🏻♀️ Is Annie lying? So much of this book was spent wondering if you could trust anything Annie said or did. The book starts off with her getting released from a mental hospital and even though they deemed her “normal” and not needing help it was clear something was going on with her mentally and physically. I’ve always enjoyed books that have an unreliable narrator and I have to say even though this book didn’t work out the best for me, this was one of the things I liked the most throughout this story.
What I Didn’t Like
🧐 What just happened? 90% of this book was such a nice atmospheric read, with a slow burn type of pace that keep readers intrigued. But the last 10% was so incredibly rushed and all over the place that it felt like such a mess.
👨👩👧👦 What about everyone else? It truly bothered me that this book is told from multiple POV’s and you only get a clear and concise ending for two of the characters. Obviously, not all of the characters are going to make it and while we do briefly learn the fate of a few who go down with the Titanic there are still a few characters whose fate we’ll never know, and that honestly pissed me off.
🔮 Supernatural aspect. It was definitely a big disappointment that the one part of the story I was really looking forward to didn’t work for me at all. I did enjoy the parts of the story where the characters felt an ominous presence on the Titanic but it never gave me that truly sinister sense. And I’m not going to lie I’m genuinely confused as to how this is considered horror.
🔚 The ending. No, no, no, no. I really HATED it. I think maybe it will work for others but for me it just felt like it didn’t match the story at all, almost as if there were too many ideas packed into such a small amount of the book. I definitely didn’t guess the plot twist at the end of the story but it felt so out of left field I don’t really know how anyone could guess it. As for the overall ending of who lived and who died I was also not a fan unfortunately.
tw: suicide (briefly mentioned, not in detail), harming of a baby, drug use, drowning
Until next time,