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Surviving Savannah af Patti Callahan

Surviving Savannah (udgave 2021)

af Patti Callahan (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
8413250,348 (4.45)1
Titel:Surviving Savannah
Forfattere:Patti Callahan (Forfatter)
Info:Berkley (2021), Edition: 1st, 432 pages

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Surviving Savannah af Patti Callahan


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Surviving Savannah by Patti Callahan is a 2021 Berkley publication.


An exciting voyage on the Pulaski suddenly turns into a nightmarish tragedy. On board the ship, are Lilly and Augusta, two women trapped by their societal obligations and expectations.

Thrown into a life- or death situation, the women come to a point of reckoning… yet only one of them would make it home to Savannah..

One hundred and eighty years later, the discovery of the sunken Pulaski steamship, once dubbed the ‘Titanic of the South’, gives Everly Winthrop, a professor, a chance to curate the Pulaski exhibit for a museum, providing her with a much- needed lifeline.

Since the loss of her best friend, Everly's been riddled with guilt, going through the motions of life, unable to pull herself out a deep depression. As a museum curator, Everly dives into the history of the Pulaski- both figuratively and literally.

I loved the premise of this novel and of course the setting. Savannah is such a storied location the city nearly always steals the show.

I have learned, by now, that when dealing with a dual timeline story, the historical elements are the heart and soul of the novel, nearly always overpowering the contemporary elements in terms of depth.

This book is no exception to that rule, although, I felt the historical portions were not as frequent or fleshed out, as I would have liked.

The author obviously did her homework, though, creating a very vivid picture of the ship, the horrifying disaster, and the struggle for survival.

The mystery of the Pulaski is so interesting it easily makes Lilly and Augusta’s part of the story the most heartbreaking, compelling, revealing, and riveting!

That said, it would have been incredibly hard for Everly to compete with that level of intensity, but her research is what helps to bring the history alive in her contemporary setting.

Still, Everly’s emotions were often palpable, beginning with the heaviness of her spirit, then progressing to her slow building excitement about the museum project, which leads to her eventual reawakening to life and living, which was a wonderful transformation to witness. I loved the way the past blended into the present and was a source of inspiration to Everly.

The book also takes a look at how people cope with what comes after, once they've managed to survive something monumental, living, seemingly by fate, when others do not. It is a thought provoking topic, as not everyone who survives will go on to live productive or exemplary lives.

Overall, this was just the kind of historical fiction I have been craving. I learned something about a historical event I was not too familiar with, and the storyline gave me some psychological elements to chew on. It is always nice to feel one has learned something new. It seems to me that the Pulaski steamship doesn't pop up in historical fiction too often- if ever.

I liked the characters and enjoyed watching them develop while a fascinating mystery unfolded. This was an interesting, memorable and lovely story, all around.

4 stars ( )
  gpangel | May 17, 2021 |
Historical fiction. Sailing ship Pulaski with +175 passengers enroute to Baltimore from Savannah exploded in 1838, killing hundreds. Less than 70 survived clinging to rafts and lifeboats over a period of several days. As author began writing book, actual ship was located a mile under the ocean and used that uncovering to add to the realism of her book. She was granted free access to the discovered items. A good story that alternated POVs with current day curator of museum and the different survivors as they struggled to live. ( )
  bogopea | May 14, 2021 |
How do you survive the surviving?

Surviving Savannah approaches this question through the interwoven stories of three women: Lilly, Augusta, and Everly. The story centers on the sinking of the Pulaski steamship in 1838. Using accounts from survivors, Patti Callahan creates a story of two women's survival from the disaster, and a modern-day heroine's survival of the death of her best friend.

It's tricky to write about the antebellum South because of its romanticized past, but Callahan expertly navigates through. The modern characters are aware of the South's inhumane past, and instead of hiding it, or sugar coating it, they put it out there - in all its ugliness - for the world to see (and learn).

If you love historical fiction, especially set in the American South, be sure to get your copy of Surviving Savannah. Excellent storytelling, characters to root for, and lessons abound! ( )
  mrstreme | May 11, 2021 |
This is the story of the steamship Pulaski which exploded in 1838, killing nearly all of its passengers. However, about 20-30 survived, and this novel fictionalizes the stories of some of the survivors. Additionally, it is told in present day, through the story of Everly Winthrop, a professor and a consultant to the museum. Everly is asked to curate an exhibit on the Pulaski. She is hesitant to do so because Oliver, the fiancé of Everly's best friend, Mora, asked. Mora died just over a year ago, and Everly is still grieving.
The story of the passengers was interesting, as was Everly's determination to tell their story. However, I felt the story took a very long time to tell, and could have been shorter. ( )
  rmarcin | May 8, 2021 |
Surviving Savannah
By Patti Callahan

A thought-provoking and riveting story of catastrophe, survival and hope.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️

In 1838, twelve members of the Longstreet family of Savannah Georgia board the luxury steamship Pulaski, to travel to Baltimore to escape the brutal Savannah summers. This is the newly built ship’s fourth journey. There are over 180 passengers and crew members on board when the ship explodes in the middle of the night. With only two working lifeboats on board, many lives were lost on that horrendous night.

The wreckage is discovered 180 years later in a hundred feet of water thirty-five miles off the coast of North Carolina. Everly Winthrope, a Savannah history professor is ask to guest-curate the collection of artifacts being recovered from the Pulaski for a local history museum. Everly’s research on what happened that night leads her to focus her efforts on two members of the Longstreet family who had boarded the ship.—Augusta Longstreet, and her niece Lilly Forsyth. These two women face difficult and heartbreaking decisions on the night of the explosion. Everly is also facing difficult decisions of her own if she is going to survive the recent loss of her best friend.

”There were many ways to survive and many ways to survive the surviving.”

Surviving Savanah is a thought-provoking story of catastrophe, survival and hope. Author Patti Callahan plucks this riveting steamship story from real life and creatively weaves the past and the present, alternating between Everly in present day, and Lilly Forsyth and Augusta Longstreet in 1838. The perseverance, determination and resilience reflected by these women makes this story captivating.

The story explores the horror of having to make instantaneous decisions that have life and death consequences and the sorrow of being a survivor when those you know and love have died. But it’s also about hope for the future and surviving the survival.

Callahan’s characters are delightfully well-developed and her writing is vividly descriptive, particularly of the days following the explosion, as many passengers are floating in the water barely clinging to life.

She has thoroughly proven her ability once again as an outstanding author. She has authored numerous novels, most recently including The Favorite Daughter and Becoming Mrs. Lewis.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for an advance reading copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

“The life we live is the life we choose. With ever decision of the hear soul and mind. What do we do with our survival? Now what?”

“You know,” he said finally, “not everyone who survives trauma becomes a better person. The idea that surviving brings everyone to a new and better place is a lie told by people who need the world to make sense.”

Publisher Berkley
Published March 9, 2021
Review www.bluestockingreviews.com ( )
  LisaSHarvey | May 2, 2021 |
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