The Glass Ocean

Written by Beatriz Williams and Lauren Willig and Karen White
Review by Rebecca Cochran

In 2013, author Sarah Blake has writer’s block. Her first book was a big hit, but now she has no ideas. Seeking inspiration, she opens an old chest that belonged to her great-grandfather and discovers something that could change history. She rushes to England to discover more about her great-grandfather and his death aboard the RMS Lusitania in 1915.

In 1915, Caroline Telfair Hochstetter finds herself aboard the Lusitania as her emotionally distant husband, Gilbert, has business in England. Caroline hopes the trip will help them reconnect, but Gilbert remains elusive, disappearing at all hours without explanation to conduct business he won’t discuss. Tessa Fairweather is also aboard, traveling second-class on her way home to Devon. She, however, is really Tennessee Schaff, a thief with a partner, who promises that this is their last heist. As Caroline and Tessa’s storylines collide, more and more is revealed about the Lusitania, the people aboard, and the secrets they keep.

The story switches between present-time Sarah and the women aboard the ship. Sarah’s blossoming romance is fun to read, as well as her discoveries of the past, but I found myself more immersed in the storyline aboard the Lusitania, which had better intrigue and suspense. The authors do a fine job with historical detail, interweaving facts with the fictional story. Although this is a joint effort between these three well-known authors, the writing is seamless and the storyline weaves together quite well.