Because who can afford books in this economy?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Distant Waves by Suzanne Weyn

Title: Distant Waves: A Novel of the Titanic
Author: Suzanne Weyn
Published: April 2009
Source: The library
Synopsis from
Science, spiritualism, history, and romance intertwine in Suzanne Weyn's newest novel. Four sisters and their mother make their way from a spiritualist town in New York to London, becoming acquainted with journalist W. T. Stead, scientist Nikola Tesla, and industrialist John Jacob Astor. When they all find themselves on the Titanic, one of Tesla's inventions dooms them...and one could save them.

Well, this book was...different than I though it would be. With a title that has the word Titanic in it, I was thinking that they would actually be on the Titanic for most of it. Instead they're only actually on it at the very end, the last 50 pages or so. Not to say that the Titanic wasn't central to the story, because it was.

Instead of an epic drama set on the Titanic *cough*movie*cough*, I got an interesting novel about Spiritualism in the early twentieth century, Harry Houdini, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Nikola Tesla. Oh, and of course, the five Taylor sisters. Jane, the second oldest, is our narrator. She tells about her life, beginning when she was four and was caught in an earthquake unintentionally caused by Tesla's invention. He makes quite and impression on her and throughout her life she collects newspaper articles about him.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that her life is living in Spirit Dale, a psychic community, with her maybe psychic mother who makes a living by telling people's fortunes, her older beautiful sister Mimi who she's always in the shadow of, her twin sisters Amelie and Emma who might actually be psychic, and her youngest sister Blythe. Needless to say, she wants out. So when she has an opportunity to enter a journalism contest that might land her in New York, she's all for it and knows exactly who her article is going to be about: Tesla.

It all really starts when she goes to interview him, and from then on you meet familiar historical figures and witness events you'd only read about. It's quite and adventure. A well written adventure to boot. It's told as a kind of flashback, which makes it interesting and different. Jane is very likeable as well, the way that she's very down to earth. I enjoyed this book much more than I thought I would and I'm glad that I picked it up.

Characters: 10/10
Plot: 9/10
Originality: 9/10
Writing: 8/10
Ending: 8/10
Overall: 44/50 B+
Title/Cover: 4/5 The cover is very haunting, but beautiful. The title is okay, not great.
Hooked: a few chapters in.
Recommend to: Historical fiction fans, people who like the story of the Titanic.


  1. This sounds really good! It's a bit different than what I usually review on my blog, but it sounds like it covers several of my interests. Thanks, I hadn't heard of this one!

    I have an award for you here: Not-Really-Southern Vamp Chick

  2. I agree, the cover is so haunting! Almost scary, actually. I'm glad you enjoyed this one!

    Une Parole

  3. That cover is absolutely stunning, and the story sounds good too. Thanks for sharing this.

  4. Sounds like a great read. And I think I'll defiantly enjoy it! Great review!

  5. sounds really good! thanks for the review :)

  6. Sounds AMAZING! Thnx for letting us kno about it!


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