Pub Writes

About the publishing Industry, editorials, and reviews

The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan

Posted by Caitie F on May 28, 2014


Title: The Lifeboat 12888599
Author: Charlotte Rogan
Hardcover: 274 pages
Pub Date: April 3, 2012
Publisher: Reagan Arthur Books
Rating: +++

Summary from pub:

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?


From the moment I heard about The Lifeboat, i knew I wanted to read it. There are so many stories about shipwrecks (mostly the Titanic, which this is not about), but not so many on survival in a lifeboat and the tough choices that have to be made.

And those choices were tough. I really let myself get lost in this novel and it was not an easy thing to do. Their situation was dangerous and suspenseful. There were so many times that all the people on that lifeboat did not do that right thing, but it is easy to see why. Sometimes you can’t do what is right, you must do what you can to survive.

The main character was interesting. I didn’t find Grace likable, but I found Grace fascinating, especially in a time where women didn’t have many options. She could be manipulative to get what she wanted, but she was also very naive to the rest of the people for much of the time. I didn’t like her, but I wanted to know more about her. I wish I had seen what some of the other women thought of her.

I was really fascinated by the gender issues of the book. Really, that was how this book centered on – how men and women reacted to those in power. Gender had everything to do with why it even went to a trial. The jury and the rest of society expected women to act one way, so when they didn’t society wanted to punish them, even if they were only trying to survive.

It was an enjoyable book, it should probably have three and a half stars. I took it down a little because it was very slow at times and I thought it could have been a little bit deeper.

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