Review: The Lifeboat

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The LifeboatThe Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan
Published by Reagan Arthur on April 3, 2012
Genres: Historical, Mystery
Pages: 278
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads
two-half-stars

Grace Winter, 22, is both a newlywed and a widow. She is also on trial for her life.

In the summer of 1914, the elegant ocean liner carrying her and her husband Henry across the Atlantic suffers a mysterious explosion. Setting aside his own safety, Henry secures Grace a place in a lifeboat, which the survivors quickly realize is over capacity. For any to live, some must die.

As the castaways battle the elements, and each other, Grace recollects the unorthodox way she and Henry met, and the new life of privilege she thought she'd found. Will she pay any price to keep it?

The Lifeboat is a page-turning novel of hard choices and survival, narrated by a woman as unforgettable and complex as the events she describes.

First Sentence: “Today I shocked the lawyers, and it surprised me, the effect I could have on them.”

Review:
The opening of The Lifeboat is definitely an attention-grabber. The prologue is set in the future with Grace Winter alive and somewhat safe. Although the reader knows she survived the harrowing events on the lifeboat, it’s also very apparent that something serious went down on that boat. Why? Because she, and some other folks, are on trial for what happened in the boat. Now, you have to read the whole book to know what happened on Lifeboat 14.

More than anything, The Lifeboat is about what people become when their survival is on the line. Just like in a dystopia, hardships bring out both the best and worst in people. Some will sacrifice themselves to save others; some destroy others to save themselves, perhaps even when it’s unnecessary.

All of the people on the lifeboat are victims of circumstance. They were on a ship and that ship sunk, leaving them stranded with limited resources on an overcrowded lifeboat, all alone and surrounded by people they don’t know or trust. What is it acceptable to do to ensure one’s survival in such a circumstance? Do crimes committed in the name of the survival of the group count when back in the real world?

For me, The Lifeboat was a good, but not an outstanding read, largely because I could not connect to Grace’s character. She is indecisive and reliant upon the strength of men. However, the ethical questions were certainly fascinating.

Favorite Quote:

“I had been allowed to believe in man’s innate goodness for the twenty-two years of my life, and I had hoped to carry the belief with me to my grave.”

One response to “Review: The Lifeboat”

  1. Melissa says:

    I just recently discovered this book looking around on Goodreads. Grace does not sound like a character I will like too much, still going to give it a try, though.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge