By: Susan Meissner
Publication Date: 3/14/2017
My Rating: 4 Stars
Wartime intrigue spans the lives of three women—past and present—in the latest novel from the acclaimed author of Secrets of a Charmed Life.
February, 1946. World War Two is over, but the recovery from the most intimate of its horrors has only just begun for Annaliese Lange, a German ballerina desperate to escape her past, and Simone Deveraux, the wronged daughter of a French Resistance spy.
Now the two women are joining hundreds of other European war brides aboard the renowned RMS Queen Mary to cross the Atlantic and be reunited with their American husbands. Their new lives in the United States brightly beckon until their tightly-held secrets are laid bare in their shared stateroom. When the voyage ends at New York Harbor, only one of them will disembark...
Present day. Facing a crossroads in her own life, Brette Caslake visits the famously haunted Queen Mary at the request of an old friend. What she finds will set her on a course to solve a seventy-year-old tragedy that will draw her into the heartaches and triumphs of the courageous war brides—and will ultimately lead her to reconsider what she has to sacrifice to achieve her own deepest longings.
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Susan Meissner returns following (2016) Stars Over Sunset Boulevard with her latest, A BRIDGE ACROSS THE OCEAN — a character-driven tale of three women from modern day to the past of the 1940s, of fear, courage pain, love, and loyalty.
From the past to present, lost souls who had to cross many bridges from pain and suffering on their journey to self-discovery.
Brette Caslake, present day lives in the present. She has a gift. She sees spirits, the ones which linger. She is drawn into a mystery which began with the RMS Queen Mary brought thousands of War brides to the US.
Annaliese Lange, who is escaping from a marriage to a Nazi, and Simone Devereux, who lost her family in the war.
"Life will send us across a bridge we did not want to cross, but when we finally open our eyes on the other side, we see that there had been nothing to fear after all."
Brette becomes drawn into the lives of three women from the past. Two of the women are escaping the horrors of war and a brutal past of pain and suffering. She tries to solve the mystery of the death of one of the war brides when traveling to America on the Queen Mary in 1946.
Three women shared a cabin; however, one did not leave the ship when it arrived in America. Brette connects with the lost souls while struggling with her own abilities. The Drifters or spirits. The author unravels the events while connecting the stories of past and present.
While I enjoyed the stories of the courageous women from the past, the present day Brette was not as intriguing.
As always, Meissner has a unique way of transporting you to another time and place re-living the past which lives on. Timeless. With well-researched topics and interesting stories of strong yet complex women, family, and relationships.
Lovers of historical fiction, a little mystery, and complex multi-layered stories will appreciate as well as enjoying the special twist!
A special thank you to Berkley and NetGalley for an early reading copy. An elegant cover!
Top 20 Mar Reads
Praise for A Bridge Across the Ocean
“I was utterly spellbound, beguiled, swept up in this ghostly mystery.”—Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
“A beguiling tapestry of storytelling and a unique look at one of history’s most enigmatic ships.”—Sarah McCoy, New York Times bestselling author of The Mapmaker’s Children
Praise for the Novels of Susan Meissner
“A shimmering novel of love and acceptance...A Fall of Marigolds turns fate into a triumph of spirit.”—Sandra Dallas, New York Times bestselling author of A Quilt for Christmas
“Susan Meissner deftly casts a fascinating friendship between two complex women against a glittering 1930s Hollywood backdrop. You will love this book for its very human characters and for its inside look at one of the greatest movies ever made.”—Marisa de los Santos, New York Times bestselling author of The Precious One
“Sympathetic, relatable characters that readers will applaud. Touching and inspirational.”—Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
Susan Meissner is a multi-published author, speaker and writing workshop leader with a background in community journalism. Her novels include A Fall of Marigolds, named to Booklist’s Top Ten Women’s Fiction titles for 2014, and The Shape of Mercy, named by Publishers Weekly as one of the 100 Best Novels of 2008. A California native, she attended Point Loma Nazarene University. Susan is a pastor’s wife and a mother of four young adults. When she’s not working on a novel, Susan writes small group curriculum for her San Diego church. Visit Susan at her website:Twitter at @SusanMeissner. Read More