Publishing year: 2012
I don’t usually read the blurb of the book before starting to read the book. So I didn’t know what this novel was about. That’s why I’ve been pleasantly surprised to see that the plot starts with one of the points in history that fascinates me, which is the sinking of the Titanic.
In this novel we are introduced to two women. The first woman is May Smith, married to Joe, and mother to one-year-old Ellen. The family are moving to America, in particular Idaho, to have a better life in the new world. Joe’s uncle has asked the young man to join him in his business of carpentry. So he and May have packed up everything in search of a dream. They are steerage passengers of the Titanic in its maiden voyage. Despite her excitement, May starts feeling uneasy, and maybe it is because she senses something might go wrong.
The other female character is Celeste Parkes. She is also married and with a three-year-old child. Her circumstances are quite different to May’s. Celeste is married to a very wealthy American businessman, but unlike May’s, her marriage doesn’t seem to be very happy. I have the feeling that Celeste is afraid of her husband and therefore unhappy. She is on board of the Titanic after attending her mother’s funeral. She is alone as her husband isn’t interested in her family or background, and apparently, he doesn’t want their son to get to know his roots either.
I wonder what will happen to these two women. I imagine that Celeste is more likely to survive the sinking, but I’m afraid for May. She and her daughter might be taken on one of the boats, but Joe will probably die. And then what will May and Ellen do without him? Will they still go to America, or will they return to England?