A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice
by Rebecca Connolly
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Pub Date 05 Apr 2022 | Archive Date 19 Apr 2022
Shadow Mountain Publishing, Shadow Mountain
Just after midnight on April 15, 1912, the passenger steamship Carpathia receives a distress signal from the largest passenger liner ever built, RMS Titanic, which is on its maiden voyage from Southampton, England, to New York.
Captain Arthur Rostron is awakened to an enormous maritime emergency with little information to guide his actions in answering the call for help. Is the dire threat to the unsinkable Titanic accurate? His ship is more than four hours away; will Carpathia hold together if pushed to never-before-tested speeds? What if his ship also strikes an iceberg? How many of Titanic’s 2,200 passengers will the Carpathia be able to accommodate? And with the freezing temperatures, will there be any survivors by the time the Carpathia arrives?
Kate Connolly is excited to join her sister in America and proud to be traveling on the grand Titanic, which was built in her Irish homeland. As a passenger in third-class accommodations, she is among the last to receive instruction and help after Titanic hits an iceberg. Among the chaos of abandoning ship, the chances of her securing a spot in a lifeboat appear grim. With the help of several men, also from Ireland, Kate finally reaches the upper decks and feels lucky to board Lifeboat 13, although no one knows if or when a rescue ship will come. She fears the icy water and wonders if they’ll all freeze to death. After seeing their magnificent ship submerge into the abyss, and hearing the cries of hundreds of fellow passengers drowning, it is almost too much to bear and Kate fleetingly thinks succumbing to her ordeal is the easiest escape.
Told in alternating chapters from the perspective of Captain Rostron on the Carpathia and Kate Connolly on the Titanic, this historical novel is a compelling, heart-pounding account of two eyewitnesses to an epic disaster. Rostron’s heroic and compassionate leadership, his methodical preparations for rescue, and his grit and determination to act honorably and selflessly to save lives and care for the survivors, sets the course for this awe-inspiring story.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 191 members
In the stories and legends surrounding the Titanic, the Carpathia, the ship that picked up the survivors from the disaster. In this novel, Connolly imagines the story as it unfolded aboard the Carpathia the night of April 15, 1912; the decision of Captain Arthur Rostron to push his ship to its structural and engineering limit to reach the survivors as quickly as possible and then alternates his story with that of Titanic lifeboat passenger #13, Kate Connolly, who is traveling to America from Ireland for a new life. Even though we already know the ending, readers will be reading with a white knuckle grip. And I have to wonder if author Rebecca is a descendant of Kate’s.
Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with an advanced copy for review!
I am absolutely obsessed with the Titanic and I read every book I can find about it so I was so excited to see this book on the NetGalley website.
Though A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is a historical fiction book, it was obviously well-researched. Rebecca Connolly did an excellent job of tapping into the emotions of the survivors aboard Titanic as well as the captain of the Carpathia who had to come to the aid of the survivors without knowing what situation he was getting into. A lot of Titanic books I've read have had a romance at the center of them but this one focused more on friendships and the rescue efforts, as well as the trauma of the events.
I think this is the Titanic book that has touched me most deeply. Connolly does a great job of exploring the heartwrenching decisions that passengers had to make, the grief of losing loved ones, and the horror of splitting families apart. I definitely had tears in my eyes while reading some of the lifeboat scenes.
There were a few mentions of religion scattered throughout the book that made sense in the historical context which I didn't mind too much. However, there was one chapter that was a whole religious funeral that I ended up skimming which affected my enjoyment of the book a bit (but that's just personal preference).
In A BRILLIANT NIGHT OF STARS AND ICE, REBECCA CONNOLLY gives us the story of the sinking of the Titanic, together with that of the Carpathia, whose captain, Arthur Rostron, bravely turned his ship around when the cry for help was intercepted by the young Marconi operator, Harold Cottam, late at night on the fourteenth of April 1912, when he was uundressing for bed. I like the way the godly captain did not hesitate to hasten to help the Titanic’s passengers, pushing the Carpathia to greater speed even as they had to move carefully around icebergs. I like the excerpts from Arthur Rostron’s book together with those from survivors of the ordeal. I also like the way the author gives us closure on some of the survivors who are the main characters in the novel by telling us what happens to them afterwards.
Kate Connolly is a young Irish girl who is travelling third class on the Titanic with a group of new found friends when the unthinkable happens - the unsinkable ship is going down! She escapes on lifeboat thirteen. After the horrors she experiences she knows she will never be the same. She feels guilty to have survived when so many haven’t. This horrific ordeal reveals what the people involved are made of. In this early twentieth century world, rife with class distinction as shown in the haughty and entitled attitude of Sir and Lady Duff-Gordon, it is “Amazing how compassion could bridge the divide of classes when nothing else could.” I like to see how the passengers on board rhe Carpathia join the crew in making things as comfortable as possible for the shipwrecked survivors even giving up their cabins in some instances.
It is a sensitively told and well researched story in which we really feel the characters’ anguish.
It is an interesting and inspirationl read and one I highly recommend.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Shadow Mountain Publishing The opinions in this review are completely my own.
As a child I was fascinated with the Titanic. Rebecca Connolly has reignited that passion with this gripping novel. Told in multiple points of view, you won't want to set it down. 5/5 stars!
When I first began this novel, I expected yet another ‘Titanic’ story, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. Vividly compelling from the first page, the author pulls us into life aboard Carpathia, en-route to Europe from America. Understandably the world continues to be fascinated by one of history’s worst maritime disasters, and most know rough details of what happened that night, but Connolly has brought us a very human story of courage and determination by Carpathia’s crew, especially its radio operator, without whom the message from Titanic would not have been heard. The fact that it was is nothing short of a miracle, and it was a night full of miracles woven into a tapestry of heartbreak.
Encompassing the magnitude of the tragedy without ever resorting to overdramatisation, Connolly’s copious research goes far beyond the actual events and into the mind and heart of Carpathia’s Captain Rostron, who was, not just a natural-born sailor, but a true gentleman in every sense of the word, who did everything he could to protect his passengers from the worst of media attention. This is fact-based fiction which will appeal to readers who enjoy a well-known story with a different twist. A deeply moving account which I can highly recommend and won’t easily forget.
Rebecca Connolly has done it again. This was stunning! The plot was well-paced and completely captivating from start to finish. The characters were well developed and intriguing. Many thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the advanced copy of the book.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice by Rebecca Connolly is a great historical fiction that highlights the Carpathia’s involvement with the aftermath of the downfall of the infamous Titanic.
I really have always been drawn to anything associated with the Titanic. I also have researched quite a bit into the rescue and post-rescue aspects, so I have knowledge of the Carpathia and its involvement. Of course I was drawn to this historical fiction that alternates between the point of view between Captain Arthur Rostron of the Carpathia and a fictional third-class passenger, Kate Connolly, on the Titanic. Being able to read this tragedy and the subsequent rescue effort. Seeing the events unfold from such diverse viewpoints and from literal opposite ends of the spectrum, was a wonderful compare and contrast of the sinking.
The author does a fabulous job creating a narrative that is emotional, jarring, suspenseful, and fresh/new despite knowing what is to happen. The concept of addressing this infamous and devastating loss from these new angles and arranging it in such an addictive, haunting, and harrowing way makes for a wonderful read. I devoured it as fast as I possibly could.
Thank you NG and Shadow Mountain Publishing for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.
I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately (as of 11/20/21 no BB listing has been created and link will be updated when it is available) and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication on 4/5/22.
I really enjoyed this book. Rebecca Connolly is a talented author and this book displays her talent perfectly! The story of the Titanic has always piqued my interest so when I saw this book, I knew I had to read it! I love that it is based on a true story, but even more alluring is that it includes the story of the Carpathia. Most retellings of the Titanic focuses solely on the ship and its passengers, however, Connolly includes the Carpathia and its Captain Arthur Rostron in addition to a passenger on the Titanic, Kate Connolly. I really enjoyed getting to explore the different perspectives of each person.
Captain Rostron is bewildered that the unsinkable ship is calling for help. After deciding to come the the rescue of the Titanic, he must push his ship to unthinkable and never tested speeds as they are four hours away from the location of the Titanic and pray they don't come in contact with icebergs along the way.
Kate Connolly is a passenger on the Titanic. She is lucky to get a spot on a lifeboat, drifting in the darkness, listening to the screams of fellow passengers in the freezing cold water, and hoping for a rescue to come quickly.
If you enjoy stories based around the Titanic, this is a MUST read!
I loved this book. Admittedly, I have been fascinated by the Titanic since we did a unit study on it and ocean exploration in 3rd grade. However, in all the time I researched it, the Carpathia was just mentioned as the ship that picked up the survivors. This historical fiction novel dives into the lives of those on the savior ship. Captain Rostron pushed his ship to its limits. I never even thought about the bravery behind the act of responding, and all that came along with the rescue. The plight of steerage passengers gets explored and honored. All in all Connolly beautifully weaves a story that amazes and engages readers from beginning to end. Thank you to NetGalley for the advance copy of the book in exchange for my honest review. I truly loved every bit of this one.
I have mixed opinions about this book. I should start by saying I’m a long time maritime history buff, which has included a ton of Titanic history. I was honestly more excited to see someone take on a story centered in large part around Arthur Rostron and the Carpathia.
Ultimately, I wish we got more depth to the Titanic characters. We hardly knew them before the ship hit the iceberg, so I wasn’t as emotionally invested in their stories. There wasn’t an enormous amount of backstory of the Carpathia crew and passengers either, but this didn’t seem as bad because we’ve really never had any historical fiction book where they’ve even been included as characters. I liked the true historical details added in, such as Carlos Hurd getting the story of a lifetime as a reporter who was a passenger on the Carpathia.
The overall historical picture presented was fairly accurate, but I noticed some glaringly obvious small inaccuracies. For example, during Captain Rostron’s testimony during the senate inquiry, he most definitely never referred to the Titanic as unsinkable, I doubt a captain ever would. The true senate inquiry actually reads like it’s own fiction. There’s also no evidence boat 13 pulled a survivor out of the water. I doubt little things like this will bother the average reader and I’m willing to overlook it a bit because it’s fiction.
Thank you to Netgalley for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
Wow! I’ve always been fascinated by the story of the Titanic but this novel awakened a whole new level of fascination. While the Titanic movie mostly focuses on everything leading up to the sinking of the Titanic, this novel focuses on the dramatic and heroic rescue operation by the crew of the Carpathia, lead by Captain Arthur Rostron. Arthur has the daunting task of responding to the distress call and orchestrating a rescue of epic scale in the frigid waters of the northern Atlantic. Be prepared to be amazed!
This book checked so many boxes for me!
I finished this book with a serious love and respect for all of the crew members who attended to the survivors on that fateful day. This book would make the most epic sequel to the movie, the Titanic, and I can only hope that @paramountpics and @jamescameronofficial take on the challenge.
P.S. My most favourite part of the book were the quotes, at the beginning of each chapter, from Captain Arthur Rostron and the survivors.
Well researched and well done @author.rebecca.connolly 🙏🏻 Thank you to @netgalley and @shadowmountainpub for providing me with this lovely eARC.
#bookstagram #canadianbookstagram #abrilliantnightofstarsandice #thetitanic #netgalley #shadowmountainpublishing #titanic
A great novel regarding the rescue of the Titantic survivors. This is a little known story of the brave captain and crew who risked their safety to perform the rescue. The characters are well developed and the story line is gripping and inspirational. A must read!
Thank you to #NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
This book was a very insightful and interesting historical novel. It gave you a good perspective of the Titanic as well as the rescue ship Carpathia.
I loved how it went back and forth between the passengers on the Titanic and the heroic efforts of the crew on the Carpathia.
The characters were well developed especially Captain Rostron. I loved hearing how the passengers on the Carpathia helped meet the needs of the titanic survivors.
The plot held my interest and had no boring, slow spots. I also loved the bit at the end where the author gave brief bios of some of the characters.
This is a book I would recommend to everyone men, teens, etc. since it was clean, fascinating and well written.
A truly phenomenal book!
We all think we know the story of the Titanic but this book makes it so much more real and compelling bringing out details forgotten in the past. Rebecca Connolly makes the characters come alive as they face the harsh realities life sometimes dishes out. Catherine or Kate is from County Caven, Ireland on her way to America and a new future traveling on the Titanic with friends. Even in steerage the ship is amazing. It was full of excited, happy people heading for an adventure if not a new life. Arthur Rostron was Captain of the Carpathia, another cruise ship heading from the United States to stops in Europe with a full load of passengers. The Carpathia was not as elegant as the Titanic but it was beautiful in its own right and had a good, experienced crew. No one knew what the future would hold and only by chance did the sailor in the radio room get the distress call from the Titanic, the ship that was unsinkable. Thus begins the saga of a moment marked by both tragedy and extreme bravery and efforts in the face of harrowing circumstances. The characters and their emotions are so real and intense I found myself both smiling and crying at different times. If you are concerned that this could be too much intensity, please know that Connolly does a masterful job of handling the situations in such a way that they are not overwhelming. I highly recommend this book. Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the copy. This is my review and all thoughts are my own.
Thank you to NetGalley and the Publisher for letting me read this book ahead of time. I loved it! No one thinks about what the Carpathia went through to get to the Titanic. This book gives us an idea of what went on and what they went through. I thought it was a wonderful story based on facts.
I was given an ARC by the publisher for an honest review.
I absolutely love reading and this book was one of those 'can't put down' types. I was absolutely enthralled. After attempting a few duds, it was such a relief and so pleasurable to read something well written, with a good pace, a clear storyline. I learnt a lot about Titanic, even through the lens of historical fiction, but no doubt telling an amazing perspective of the well-known story. Will definitely be following this author!!
Having been fascinated with the Titanic for years (long before the 1997 movie came out), I’m always interested in reading books related to the topic.
This historical fiction novel focuses on the aftermath of the sinking and the crew of the Carpathia, the ship that rescued the survivors.
While the story presented a different angle, I felt the book fell short on character development. For example, we are just intrigued to a group of women travelling to New York in steerage. No sooner do we meet them then the ship has sunk. It’s hard to care much for the characters if you aren’t given a chance to know them.
The pacing of the story is quite fast, so it’s a quick read, I just felt it came at the expense of a more literary, if you will, quality. I did still like the book though.
Thank you to NetGalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
So good! I have been obsessed with the titanic forever and learned something new despite my many years of research on my own. That’s how you you know it’s a good historical fiction novel. No romance in this one but I still found myself really enjoying it.
This was a very good book, told largely from the perspective of the Captain of the Carpathia, the only ship that responded to the emergency calls of the Titanic. Captain Rostron of the Carpathia literally pushes his ship to the limits, getting as much speed as possible to reach the Titanic in time. We also hear from a fictional person in steerage on the Titanic, Kate Connolly, a young girl from Ireland on he way to America to meet up with her sister and eventually, she hopes, a job. The sinking of the Titanic happens very quickly, Kate and a few other girls she had made friends with make it up the the boat deck with the help of a fellow they had met earlier, his fate was unknown. Kate and her friends make it into a lifeboat (number 13) with an almost full load of passengers and manage to make it away from the Titanic as it sinks. Captain Rostron is not only pushing his ship for speed, he's dodging icebergs by directing the person steering the ship to steer right or left, managing to miss all of them, a miraculous feat. The Carpathia eventually arrives at the coordinates where the Titanic should be but discovers only lifeboats and bodies of those that did not make it into a lifeboat. He gets all the survivors on board, even though his ship already has maximum passengers on board. The survivors are put up in any space that can be found, including the Captain's room. This was a quick read, I learned a lot about the Carpathia and her role in the disaster, although the Titanic is still the more famous ship. I would recommend. Thank you to Netgalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing for the ARC.
3.75 stars on storygraph
4.0 stars on goodreads
Since I was a little girl, I have always been morbidly obsessed with the sinking of the Titanic since the glorious Kate Winslet and Leonardo Di Caprio graced our screens. I probably have watched it, 60 or so times and in 2012 I dragged my future husband to see it in 3D on big screen (which I never got to see in 1997 as I was 5 years old). In 2020, my dream overseas trip commencing at the Belfast museum got cancelled (no surprises there), it was an extremely disappointing time for me. I had been dreaming of this trip and wanted to see the "other side of the Titanic" as I have become worried about the romanticisation of the Titanic through Cameron's portrayal . The Titanic's sinking was a tragedy and one of nightmares. Due to this, I have been dying to read more historical fiction related to the Titanic, which did not have a romantic focus.
As I was scrolling through Netgalley.com, the gorgeous cover including the overarching, grim, iceberg, immediately got my attention. One of my favourite book covers so far for 2022. I cannot wait to add a copy to my shelf. Author Rebecca Connolly kindly included a character map included the characters which was particularly helpful as there is a complex range of characters that you will meet during this novel. It can be particularly confusing as there are multiple characters with the same first name.
Even though, the tragic sinking happens relatively early on in the novel, the heart wrenching moments are when fellow passengers are entering the safety of the Carpathia, captained by Rostron. This answers the questions, why couldn't other ships like Carpathia get to the Titanic to rescue the poor passengers.
This book did take me some time to read, only because of the time in my life (moving house and leaving jobs) however it is a fairly quick read. It does take a while to get through the early portions of Rostron's perspective. Each chapter is divided by a vignette from a real-life Titanic passenger or staff member from the Carpathia.
I would recommend for the 110th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, for you to read this book before watching the film.
Thank you Shadow Mountain and Netgalley for providing me a copy of this ebook to read in exchange of my honest review.
This is a wonderful telling of the fate of the Titanic through the eyes of the Captain of the Carpathia, the sole ship that responded to the emergent calls from the Titanic.
I have read non-fiction and fiction about the voyage of the Titanic and Rebecca Connelly writes with well researched fact, rich in character and beautiful in prose. Emotionally, I laughed and cried and was moved by the thoughts, feelings and decisions that were made by crew of the Carpathia, Titanic and passengers on that fateful night. It was captivating, unputdownable and the best historical fiction on the Titanic that I have read.
NetGalley, Rebecca Connolly and Shadow Mountain Publishing, thank you for an ARC in exchange for an honest book review.
This book alternates between Captain Rostron of the Carpathia, and Kate, a third class passenger on the Titanic. After receiving a distress call, Captain Rostron speeds towards the Titanic, while his crew prepares for the worst. Onboard the Titanic, Kate and her friends are told that nothing is wrong and that they should remain calm. Once she realizes that water is creeping through her third class berth, Kate fights her way to second class, and onto a lifeboat.
This was a fast paced and captivating novel. I really enjoyed reading about the Carpathia and the rescue attempts. I'm not sure I have seen anything else from this point of view. Well written, I could not put this book down. Highly recommended!
As someone who is interested in all things Titanic, I knew I had to read this as soon as I read the description on NetGalley. The story is told from two points of view, a group of young women heading to New York in third class aboard the Titanic & Arthur Rostron, Captain of the Carpathia.
I enjoyed reading the story of Rostron and his crew as they selflessly risked their own ship to respond to the distress calls of the Titanic. I knew the Carpathia was the only ship to respond, but I didn’t know how risky it was or how close they were to missing the call. What a miracle!
I wish Connolly had given more of a backstory into the characters on the Titanic. I found that I didn’t connect to them as much as I would have liked to. The writing wasn’t very detailed which made for a quick read, but also caused me to take off a star.
Overall, I give this book 4 stars out of 5. It was an interesting, quick read. Thank you to NetGalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing for providing me with an advanced copy to read and review.
A powerful look into two different perspectives of the sinking of the Titanic - one from a survivor, Kate Connolly of Lifeboat 13, and one from the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostron.
**Thanks to the NetGalley and the publisher for an advance copy of this title in exchange for a fair and honest review**
Historical fiction is one of my favourite genres and, like many people, I have a fascination with the story of the Titanic so this title jumped out at me. I also helped that the cover was beautiful and I am definitely a sucker for a pretty cover.
The storyline is split between 2 main characters; a passenger in Titanic's steerage section and the Captain of the Carpathia (the ship which came to the aid of the survivors). You get to know both of these characters a little before the disaster happens (spoiler - the Titanic sinks) and then you're thrown headlong into the race for survival.
We all know the story well enough - there weren't enough lifeboats on the Titanic and those that were launched into the water saved only a fraction of those who were on board with over a thousand of the passengers drowining or freezing to death in the water.
This came across as well-researched book, many of the characters were based on real people, and the author had clearly worked hard to make sure they were represented as fairly as possible. I was particularly struck by the cruel irony of 2 passengers having the same name and the wrong family being informed of her survival.
I was not sure what to expect with this book. I,like so many, have always found the Titanic intriguing a story, but I really haven't read too much about it.
I loved the direction this took, following the Carpathia and it's crew, along with some of the survivors. They came to life as the story progressed. We could feel their pain and their sorrow, along with how hard some of the decisions were they had to make.
This was well written, as I would expect from this author. The research involved has to be extensive.
This is a worthy read! Well done!
This book honors its premise by showcasing the experiences of both the Titanic and the Carpathia's crews the night of the sinking through the personal perspective of two different characters. While historically accurate, I did at times find the presentation a bit lackluster and dry. The prose is serviceable where I would have enjoyed a lot more description. As a result, I did not ultimately find myself as immersed in the story as I would have liked.
Wow! I am amazed by this book. I kind of have been putting off reading it, but it was just stunning. A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is a historical fiction based on the Carpathia and her crew that rescued 705 passengers from the sinking of the Titanic.
I really enjoyed this book, it was fascinating to learn more about the rescue of the passengers through this book. I really admire Captain Arthur Rostron, he was a real man and he truly did save many lives. It was interesting to read about what Connoley chose to write of. This was a great book especially considering that it is based on a real life event. I love the way that Connorly wove this story together, it changed between the Captain of the Carpathia and a female third-class passenger on the Titanic, Kate Connolly.
I was able to connect to these characters, these people through the book and understand how they were feeling. It was such a powerful and devastating book to read because I knew that there were many who could not be saved. Although I knew the outcome of the Titanic, I was still on the edge of my seat as the Carpathia raced to the Titanic and as Kate waited on a lifeboat for help to come.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is definitely a book to read if you enjoy historical fiction.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.
I thought the Author had done well on her research before writing this book. When I first started reading, I didn't realize it was alternating chapters, between the Titanic ship and the Carpathia ship, so I was a little confused, but by the end of the 2nd chapter I was hooked, the story follows along the Sinking of the Titanic, Kate Connolly is on her way to America to join her sister, she is in a room with a few other women, all very different personality's, just trying to have a good trip, and then she feels something happen, no more sound of the engine, but no one will let them up past the 3rd deck where they staying. Then the story about the ship that is headed 4 hours away, to try and rescue the passengers that are on a sinking ship, the Carpathia, and the Captain Rostron, who Is horrified when he receives the news, he knows they are hours away, they wont stand a chance at reaching them unless they push never before speed, but can the ship handle that, or does he risk more danger.
I loved reading this book, I couldn't hardly put it down once I got going on it,
I read A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice in one sitting because I was so compelled by the story and the characters.
As most of us, I knew the basics of the story of the Titanic, I’d seen the movie and various documentaries about it. I really enjoyed reading about a familiar story from the perspective of the Carpathia, the eventual rescue ship. Throughout the book the chapters change perspective from a third class passenger, Kate, on the Titanic to the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur. The decisions Captain Arthur made that night saved the lives of hundreds and his thought process was fascinating to read about.
I really loved that while this is historical fiction, it wasn’t based around a war. It was a nice change of pace.
Ever since I was 14 years old I've been hooked on Titanic and her passengers for years. I love anything new and I was happy to grab this one.
I liked this book because it was fast paced.
In my opinion the author has done a wonderful job in her research for this book and she's done a remarkable job in bringing the passengers to life once more and I really like the Carpathia and her captain's side of the story
I've always wondered what Carpathia's passengers thought of this dreadful situation.
In this well written story we get to find out.
I was lost in the book and didn't want to come back to the present.
Titanic is a very hard and emotional story that I feel like we have learned many important things from her.
Maritime laws have changed for the better along with other things too.
Synopsis: This novel covers the story of the Titanic interchangeably through the point of view of a passenger and the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostron.
I always love historical fiction about the Titanic or other grand ships in the early 1900s. This novel covered a new point of view of the story from the crew of the Carpathia which was refreshing given the many nonfictional and fictional narratives of the passengers of Titanic. I liked learning about Rostron through a fictional based first person narrative and I am eager to learn more about him. His character development was strong and I’m so glad his story is being told. As to the characters on the Titanic, I felt like there were almost too many players to keep up with. The main character Kate Connolly is only lightly expanded upon and she has so many peers in the novel (with the same name as well) that it was hard to keep track and connect with them all. Also there is a chapter (#20) that is based on prayer for all the passengers alive and lost. While this is beautiful to read about and I understand the need to cover both religious values, there were too many quoted prayers/songs and less narrative that I ended up skimming the chapter entirely. Criticisms aside, I enjoyed reading this story and I appreciated the authors attention to detail and research on the seafaring side of the story. I recommend this to readers that love history and immersing themselves in well known stories. I also appreciate delving into a lesser known version of the Titanic tragedy. Overall 3.5 stars rounded up for support!
Thank you to NetGalley and Shadow Mountain publishing for a eARC copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
I loved this one . I felt as though on boat that night . I loved the characters and the evocative sense of place and time. It was masterful in its crafting. Excellent piece of historical fiction!
Brilliantly done! I could feel everything as if I was right there. This was such a heart wrenching time in history and Rebecca Connolly nailed it!
Wow! Rebecca Connolly took me on an emotional journey with this book. I have only ever seen movies about the Titanic. One I liked (The Unsinkable Molly Brown) the other I didn't like at all (The Titanic). This book was so well researched and written that I felt like I was on each ship with the people, the Titanic and the Carpathia. I was heartbroken with the horrors that happened. I was deeply moved by the heroic efforts of people from both ships. I was inspired by the captain and crew of the Carpathia. This book is amazing. It captured the tragedy and the beauty of that night perfectly. I would highly recommend this book to those that have any interest in history or the events of that night.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice. The story of the ship and her crew that came to the rescue of the Titanic--the ship that was unsinkable.
There are some books you read that are a 5-star book. And then there are FIVE STAR BOOKS with a little extra. Those are the books that have written a whole new page in the book of your soul and you are forever a little better for it.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice by Rebecca Connolly is a story that touched my heart and left a life-changing imprint.
We all know the event of the Titanic. We know it was a tragedy for the ages. Most of us have seen at least enough of the iconic movie to know the main points to the story. But what most people don't know is the story of Carpathia, the only ship to answer the Titanic's distress call.
When I saw that this book was going to be released this year, I knew it was one I wanted to read. I'm always game for a good historical fiction story, and this one seemed like it was going to be a GOOD historical fiction novel. It's pretty early on in the year, folks, but I'm going to venture to say that this is going to be one of my highlighted reads when 2022 reaches an end.
I was interested to see how heavy this read was going to be, discussing such a heavy topic as this story was. Rebecca Connolly did a fantastic job at keeping the story rolling. She built that connection to the characters and the story without destroying your soul in the plot. She keeps it serious and humbling while also being uplifting and "warm".
Never once did I find myself tired of reading this book.
It was full of many rich, historical details and kept well in line with fact.
Some people have noted that there is one chapter in particular in the book that is full of much prayer and hymn singing, and less dialogue. That is a true point, but it didn't deter the story for me. I feel like this was more an immersive story than not, and this chapter in particular focused more on "walking in the shoes" of those on board the ship after the rescue than it did on being a third-person bystander.
I could see how this could be a drab chapter to get through for some, but I didn't mind it. It didn't last long, and helped me really connect with how the people on board must have been feeling after such a large ordeal. It showed how thoughtful and caring the Captain was to even think of such details as different religions among all the larger pressing details he was worrying about.
As a whole, this story was truly incredible. An amazing read I will be reading again and thinking on often.
Seeing the miracles unfold in this story left me in awe. I cried. (I knew I probably would-- it's the Titanic, for gosh sakes...) But not just sad tears. There were such beautiful "highs" to match the lows. If you want a reminder that there are miracles all around, even in the hardest of times, OPEN THIS BOOK and look for them. They will pour out of the pages. I'm so glad I was able to learn the story about the Carpathia and her crew. What an INCREDIBLE story.
“A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice” is an ingenious piece of historical fiction!
A Titanic passenger’s journey to survival and a captain’s expedition in answering the sinking ships distress call. While we know the history of Titanic sinking, what about the Carpathia’s voyage in responding to the “unsinkable ship” or a survivor’s passage out of the frozen abyss. .…. Highly recommend!
A sincere thank you to NetGalley, Shadow Mountain Publishing, and Shadow Mountain for providing me an advance copy (ARC) of this book in exchange for an honest review. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to read this story and leave my review voluntarily.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice by Rebecca Connolly is the story of the Titanic told from a different perspective than you normally hear. While some of the story is told from the perspective of a third class passenger on board the Titanic, most of the book takes place on board the Carpathia, the show that responds to the distress call from the Titanic and rescues her survivors.
I was a little hesitant to give this book a try because I am not usually a fan of historical novels. To my surprise I really enjoyed reading this book. I was captivated by the story from beginning to end. Connolly did a great job bringing the story to life and making you feel as if you were right there witnessing this tragedy. I highly recommend this book.
“We were not prompted by testing our mettle or our might, Dean. We were prompted by our humanity. We risked our ship, our passengers, and ourselves to save the lives of others.” [Captain Arthur Rostron]
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is an emotional depiction of the sinking of Titanic from the perspective of the Carpathia, the ship who came to her rescue. Rebecca Connolly does an exquisite job weaving stories of actual Titanic survivors and Carpathia crew members to illustrate a comprehensive picture of the tragic night.
I’ve always been fascinated by the story of the Titanic since I was little and really enjoyed getting this perspective from the Carpathia. I loved that Connolly’s characters are real passengers and crew members and the care she took in telling their stories. One of my favorite aspects of the book was the quotes from Captain Arthur Rostron, other crew members, and passengers at the beginning of each chapter.
Thank you to NetGalley, Shadow Mountain Publishing, and author Rebecca Connolly for the eARC!!
What a gripping, fascinating read! This brilliantly written story about the daring rescue after the sinking of the Titanic kept me riveted from beginning to end. This stirring story is told by Arthur Rostron, the Captain of the Carpathia, and Kate Connolly, a third class passenger of the Titanic. Vivid detailed descriptions transported me to the scene--on board the Titanic, in the frigid waters of the Atlantic, or on board the Carpathia. Through Ms. Connolly’s rich expressive prose, I could feel the intensity of the mission and the anguish of the Carpathia’s brave captain and crew as they speedily navigated through the icy, treacherous waters of the Atlantic toward the sinking Titanic. I could also feel the joy of the Titanic’s passengers as they embarked on their journey and then the fear and trauma of the survivors who were floating in the Atlantic’s dark, freezing waters. The story is fictional, but the characters and events are real and are beautifully portrayed showing evidence of the author’s extensive research. If you are looking for a well-written fictional story based on historical fact, you will want to try this one! This is the first book I have read by this author, and I will definitely be seeking out more of her works.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in e-book form from the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
This was a wonderful historical fiction story. I loved how it brought out the emotions and reality that these passengers faced. What a beautiful story.
I absolutely loved this book! I love anything on the Titanic, but having it told from two different people, on two different ships, made you feel like you were watching it unfold. Also loved that it was based on true events. Once I started it, I couldn't put it down.
"The whole thing was absolutely providential. I have no other explanation for it."
Based on the true story of the rescue of Titanic survivors by the Carpathia, this story moves between the viewpoint of Captain Arthur Rostron of the Carpathia and Kate Connolly, a third class passenger of the Titanic. The first half of the book is very fast paced leading up to the last days and hours of the disaster. It truly was miraculous the Carpathia received the telegram signal from Titanic and was able to reach them as quickly as it did.
The last quarter of the book moved much slower in response to the grief and shock experienced by the survivors aboard the Carpathia. The memorial service and then burial at sea of four who did not survive the rescue was very moving and reverent. I appreciated how the writer used both prayers actually shared during the event and hymns that were well-known at that time.
This was an absolute tragedy. The writer did not try to create a sensation novel, but was able to fill out real people in response to a real nightmare event where over 700 survived against the odds. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
I have read many books about the Titanic but knew little about the Carpathia which quickly went to aid the Titanic to rescue surviving passengers. Loved reading from Carpathia perspective. Many details I had not known before. Great read!
This was one of those books that I plowed through in the course of a night when I really settled down to read it. Have read many Titanic accounts and but I have been waiting for a book like this from the perspective of the Carpathia, so I was very excited to spot this and it was truly what I have been waiting for.
Told through the eyes of Captain Rostron who navigated the RMS Carpathia on that fateful night the Titanic went down, the story is a mix of emotions, sadness and determination of a man who was powerless to help many more of the victims of Titanic as he risked the lives of his own crew and passengers to assist in the rescue. Also told is the story of Titanic passenger Catherine Connolly, a young woman who left Ireland to meet up with her sister in New York and start a new life. Kate tells the tale of befriending another group of young women on their way to start anew when tragedy strikes and their hopes and dreams quickly turn into terror and fighting to survive. Most of us know about Titanic's tragic end and of all the people who perished but this book had a depth of emotions that you can feel through the eyes of Captain Rostron and young Kate at least for me it did, I was totally immersed in the storyline that I had to finish it last night. This was totally awesome. Recommended!
Thanks so much to author Rebecca Connolly and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this fantastic book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Like many people, I devour books about the Titanic disaster. A Night of Brilliant Stars and Ice looks at the shipwreck from the perspective of the Carpathia, which has become a footnote to the tragic events. I loved the history of the book but the storyline and characters fell a little flat. I think I would have preferred this in a nonfiction format but it was still engrossing and a fast read.
This book gripped me from the beginning., based on a true story. The book is told from the voice of Captain Arthur Rostron of the Carpathia and Kate Connolly, a third class passenger of Titanic. With the authors attention to detail, it wasn't hard to imagine the sheer panic of those aboard the Titanic. This book was well written and I think Rebecca Connolly, did a good job of recreating what happened.
What a great historical fiction. I think many dont consider what the people aboard the Carpathia we’re going through. And this story gave a voice to people from both ships. It was an engrossing read to say the least.
When the Titanic hit an iceberg on April 14, 1912, the tragedy that we are all so familiar with quickly unfolded. The Carpathia, another passenger steamship that was 4 hours away, heard their distress call early in the morning on April 15th, and tried to come to their aid. As we know, they were too late.
The story of the Titanic (and the sequence of events involved in the only voyage it took) has always been something that has fascinated me. I've always read books & accounts of the tragedy, wanting to learn all I could. As soon as I read the description of this book, I knew I needed to read it.
What I loved about this book was that it didn't take the usual route of Titanic books, as it was really focused more on the Carpathia & imagining how the events unfolded for their passengers & crew. The story is told from two perspectives - Captain Arthur Rostron (the captain of the Carpathia) and Kate Connolly (a third class passenger on the Titanic). The sinking of the Titanic was featured, of course, but it focused more on the Captain's perilous journey to try to save the Titanic. He literally entered a minefield of ice & unknown conditions, putting himself & his boat at risk to try to save this other ship in distress. I love how the author put his perspective into the book. He was calm, collected, and entirely in charge of all going on. His goal was to save people. For me, Kate's perspective was not as heart wrenching as some of the accounts from survivors have been, but I understand that wasn't the focus.
I did love that the author stayed very true to history with her timeline & characters. So many of the characters named throughout the book (including Titanic survivors) are actual real life people, and I loved being able to look them up (or recognize them) as I read. I'm very glad that this book really focused on what the Carpathia did, as it is a bit of history that people forget about (or overlook) when thinking about the Titanic. I highly recommend this for anyone who is interested in this piece of history!
(3.75 STARS, ROUNDED UP TO 4)
An intriguing look into the character, emotions, and heroism of Carpathia's Captain Rostron. I especially loved the references to Carpathia's other crew by name, particularly the officers and Purser Brown. These names, as the author rightly says at the novel's conclusion, seem to be left out of the history books unlike Rostron.
Having a Titanic passenger in Kate Connolly overlap with Rostron on Carpathia was a great way of weaving together the two ships, showing Carpathia's transition from a ship of happenstance to a ship of salvation. My only comment on this part of the novel is the author's frequent use of the same name for multiple characters - while I appreciate the reasoning behind it, that being the use of rather common Irish names, it became difficult to follow as a reader with multiple Marys, Martins, and Katies to keep track of.
I really liked the use of quotes from the testimonies of Captain Rostron, Carpathia passengers, and Titanic survivors placed between chapters to break them up. There's always something haunting about reading the exact words of firsthand witnesses which adds an extra element of poignancy.
Overall, A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice was an enjoyable and emotive read and I will certainly be purchasing a copy upon its release to add to my Titanic historical fiction library!
Connolly breathes life into the harrowing Titanic rescue mission from the viewpoint of the Carpathia. Switching between Captain Arthur Rostron of the Carpathia and Kate Connolly, a third-class passenger aboard the Titanic, the events on April 14th, 1912 are relayed minute by minute.
It is a pristinely told story of unbearable grief and stomach churning loss that morph themselves into brilliant inspiration, hope, and the goodness of humankind.
A huge thank you to Netgalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing for the chance to review. I cannot wait to get my own copy for my bookshelf.
I have no shame in saying I love reading anything and everything Titanic related. I just finished Stacey Lee's The Luck of the Titanic (a great YA historical told from a Chinese-British POV) so was thrilled to have gotten approved for this title as well. This book provides a different perspective to an event many of us already know so well, told from the POV of those on the Carpathia that answered the Titanic's distress call, as well as providing perspectives from the Titanic. An engrossing read and a nice addition to the canon of Titanic fiction out there.
This book is a great historical fiction. I love books about the Titanic disaster. A Night of Brilliant Stars and Ice looks at the shipwreck from the perspective of the Carpathia. This book was very well written and the author stayed very true to history with her timeline and characters.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is definitely a book I recommend everyone read!
In the words on Mr. Knightly "if loved you less I might be able to talk about it more." That is absolutely how I feel about this brilliant story. I am at a loss for words. How have I lived my life never knowing (or even wondering) about the ship that came to the Titanic's rescue?
I feel a profound sense of loss for all the lives lost with the sinking of the Titanic and at the same time extreme pride in those who assisted in the rescue. Captain Rostron is to be praised for all of the tough decisions he had to make and for caring more about the survivers than anything else. What an amazing man and what an incredibly dedicated crew.
The story of Kate, though fictionalized, was insightful and brought the story to life. I can not even fathom the terror and pain of that night.
Rebecca Connolly did a beautiful job of blending the two POVs coming from the Carpathia and the Titanic to create a realistic look at what that night held for everyone involved. I've been a long time fan of Rebecca Connolly and can only say that she made the leap to a new genre of writing spectacularly!
"The magnitude of the tragedy will overshadow everything else— as it should. The losses will outweigh the gains; that is simply human nature. Our providential moment in the sea will fade against the tales of each life lost, each lifeboat launched, and each member of the crew who sacrificed himself or herself to the sea."
Solid 5 star historical fiction! Loved every second of reading it.
Things to know about content: tragedy and death. No language or sex.
A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice is a well-researched historical fiction about the captain and crew of the RMS Carpathia, which rescued 705 Titanic survivors. The author, Rebecca Connelly, has done a terrific job gathering facts about the two ships, their crew, and several passengers, and spinning them into a stunning survival story.
The main characters in this book are the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostron, and Titanic steerage passenger, Katie Connelly. The novel unfolds as a dual storyline, which ultimately comes together as the passengers from the sunken Titanic settle onto the Carpathia.
For me, it was a little off-putting to begin the novel with a three page list of characters. Usually when a book begins with a long list of characters, the reader instantly knows they will have to slow down and spend a lot of time memorizing who is who for the first few chapters. In this book, the majority of the characters on the lists were very minor characters in the story, and I was able to establish the main characters fairly quickly.
Once I got into the story, the pages raced by! Even though we all know how the story of the Titanic ends, this author was able to spin a very fascinating and fast paced story of their survival.
I appreciate how much I learned about the Carpathia and its crew. Captain Rostron and his crew truly were the heroes of that disaster. Previously, I didn’t know the details of the risky decisions the captain and crew made in order to rescue as many passengers as possible. The author’s research and development of the Carpathia crew is fantastic!
I highly recommend this book, especially to lovers of historical fiction and anyone interested in the Titanic. 4.25 Stars.
I finished this book in a day, that's how much I enjoyed it. It was such an interesting and new perspective on the story of the Titanic. I don't read much historical fiction but this book captivated me. The beginning quarter seemed a little rushed for me, as the last quarter dragged out a bit, overall a really solid and enjoyable read that I would recommend to anyone (even if you're not a history buff).
I am obsessed with the Titanic and its story, and this is one side you never hear about. I have heard of the Carpathia before in my research on the Titanic, but I never knew much about it. I loved this story and how it told another point of view on the story we all know. I know this was a fiction story, but I feel as though there was quite a bit of facts in it that made it almost seem like you were reading the true story of that night from someone on the boat.
Thanks to Shadow Mountain Publishing and NetGalley for an advanced copy for my review. “A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice” gives a new perspective to the story of the Titanic. Vivid characters and detailed historical facts bring the actions of the Carpathia to life, and offers readers a new point of view on what happened that infamous night.
See the moving and emotional story of the Titanic through a unique perspective.
In this novel we get to experience the events of the Titanic’s sinking in alternating POVs, from one of its survivors and from the one captain who answered its distress call.
My favorite part was reading from Captain Arthur Rostron’s perspective. He strives to maintain his composure through the night's disaster but cannot help the heartache he feels for each of Titanic's passengers. He is sentimental, but courageous as he does all he can to come to their aid. We know that night was horrible for every Titanic passenger, survivor or not, but I never gave much thought to the risks involved for their rescuers and how the night affected them. As captain of the Carpathia, Arthur must navigate the same icy waters that brought Titanic down, see the wreckage remaining on the sea, and witness firsthand the raw horror and grief in the survivors just hours after they lost everything.
Kate Connolly is a 3rd class passenger on Titanic and one the few that survived. She boarded alone, and had no husband or family to be separated from. I liked her character, but there was nothing particularly unique or memorable about her story. It seems this was intentional, and I don’t view it as a negative. Instead of focusing solely on her character, I found myself feeling sympathetic towards all the passengers. She acted as the eyes and ears that allowed the reader to see the effects of loss for everyone on Titanic, whether it was great or small. It emphasized, as is mentioned in the book, “A loss for one was a loss for all.”
Bottom Line: Would recommend for fans of Titanic, maritime history, historical fiction based on fact, or those wanting a unique view on a familiar story.
Content/Trigger Warnings: Overall a clean read. Of course, Titanic being the tragedy it was, there is going to be talk of death, grief, and injury. Some parts were sad to read about, but it was handled well. Enough to tug at your emotions but not graphic that it becomes disturbing.
Profanity: Maybe one or two minor curse words.
Religious aspects: Mention of people praying and providence. Most references are consolidated to the chapter where the memorial service takes place which I skimmed through.
A couple of favorite quotes:
“The sea would be his companion, the ship his instrument, and their song that of his heart.”
“Amazing how compassion could bridge the divide of classes when little else could.”
I received this eARC free from NetGalley in exchange for my honest feedback.
hope, rescue, historical-figures, historical-places-events, historical-research, historical-setting, history-and-culture, drama, tragedy, Atlantic-ocean*****
The Captain of the Carpathia had a choice: admit defeat in the face of overwhelming odds or try his very best with all of the limited resources at hand and save as many of the Titanic's passengers from certain death as he possibly could. This is a very moving story told mostly from two perspectives. See the publisher's blurb for a good intro.
It would have made for easier reading for me if it was TTS enabled.
I requested and received a free e-book copy from Shadow Mountain Publishing via NetGalley.
Rescuing Titanic-A true story of quiet bravery in the North Atlantic by Flora Delargy is a limited form of this story written for readers aged 7 - 11 Years.