"I was to stand trial for my life. I was twenty-two years old. I had been married for ten weeks and a widow for six"
The words of Grace Winter taken from the prologue of the story of The Lifeboat. Grace and her wealthy banker husband Henry were travelling to New York on the Empress Alexandra in the summer of 1914 when a mysterious explosion ripped through the liner. Henry managed to secure a place in a lifeboat for Grace, but he was not so lucky and perished.It soon becomes clear to Grace and her fellow passengers that there are too many people in the lifeboat, and this is where the story really begins. Under the leadership of ship's crewman Hardie, the assorted travellers will spend the next three weeks at sea. Some will live, some will die, but all of them will discover things about themselves and their companions. Their beliefs, their principles, their morals will be tested to the limit, each and every one of them will be made to face up to the fragility of life.
The Lifeboat is a tale of survival first and foremost, but underneath this it is a complex and many layered story dealing with friendship, deception, frustration and despair.
An outstanding debut novel that had me gripped throughout. Charlotte Rogan really is 'one to watch'.