It is 1941 and America teeters on the brink of war. Outgoing naval officer Ensign Jim Avery escorts British convoys across the North Atlantic in a brand-new destroyer, the USS Atwood. Back on shore, Boston Navy Yard secretary Mary Stirling does her work quietly and efficiently, happy to be out of the limelight. Yet, despite her reserved nature, she never could back down from a challenge. When evidence of sabotage on the Atwood is found, Jim and Mary must work together to uncover the culprit. A bewildering maze of suspects emerges, and Mary is dismayed to find that even someone close to her is under suspicion. With the increasing pressure, Jim and Mary find that many new challengesand dangersawait them.
Sarah Sundin takes readers to the tense months before the US entered WWII. Readers will encounter German U-boats and torpedoes, along with the explosive power of true love, in this hopeful and romantic story.
About the Author
Sarah Sundin is the author of With Every Letter, On Distant Shores, In Perfect Time, and the Wings of Glory series. In 2014, On Distant Shores was a finalist for the Golden Scroll Awards from both AWSA and the Christian Authors Network. In 2011, Sarah received the Writer of the Year Award at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. A graduate of UC San Francisco School of Pharmacy, she works on call as a hospital pharmacist. During WWII, her grandfather served as a pharmacist's mate (medic) in the Navy and her great-uncle flew with the US Eighth Air Force in England. Sarah lives in California with her husband and three children. Visit www.sarahsundin.com for more information.
Read an Excerpt
Through Waters Deep
By Sarah Sundin
RevellCopyright © 2015 Sarah Sundin
All rights reserved.
Boston Navy Yard; Boston, Massachusetts Tuesday, March 18, 1941
On a platform by the bow of the USS Ettinger, Mary Stirling prepared supplies no one would notice unless they were missing.
While nautical pennants snapped in the sea breeze and the band played "Anchors Aweigh" for the ship-launching ceremony, Mary set down a box containing rags, a towel, a whisk broom, and a first aid kit. Then she nestled a bottle of champagne in a silver bucket.
Something crinkled. Odd.
Mary picked up the bottle in its decorative tin shield that prevented shattering. Yesterday, she'd tied red, white, and blue ribbon around the neck. Now the ribbon didn't lie flat, the bow was lopsided, and the foil around the cork seemed loose and wrinkled, as if someone had taken it off and replaced it.
Why? Scenarios zipped through her head, each more ludicrous than the one before. "Too much Nancy Drew in junior high," she muttered. And too many spy and saboteur stories in the press lately. With the United States clinging to neutrality in the war in Europe, tensions between isolationists and interventionists had become sharper than the prow of the Ettinger.
Mary stroked the sleek red hull of the new destroyer towering above her. "Into the wild Atlantic you go."
"That is a bad year."
Mary smiled at the French accent and faced her roommate and co-worker at the Boston Navy Yard, Yvette Lafontaine.
"I doubt the Ettinger cares about the champagne's vintage."
"She should." Yvette narrowed her golden-brown eyes at the ship, then lit up and grasped Mary's shoulders. "But you look très magnifique."
Mary knew better than to argue. "Thank you for helping me choose the hat. I love it." The shape flattered her face, and the fawn color blended with her brown hair and the heavy tweed coat she wore. It would also go well with her spring coat — if winter ever ended.
Yvette fingered the puff of netting on the brim. "I still prefer the red one."
"Sometimes a woman needs to ... to accent, not match." The glamorous brunette tapped Mary's nose. "You listen to me. We French know fashion, wine, food, and love. Obviously we do not know war." Her voice lowered to a growl.
Mary puckered one corner of her mouth in sympathy. Poor Yvette had been studying at Harvard when the Nazis trampled her country in May and June of 1940. Almost a year ago. Stranded in the States after graduation, Yvette took a job at the Navy Yard.
"I'll see you at the apartment. I must find Henri and Solange." Yvette trotted down the steps.
"See you later." Mary spotted her boss, Barton Pennington, next to the platform. She leaned over the railing draped with red, white, and blue bunting. "Mr. Pennington!"
He smiled up at her and folded his gloved hands over his broad belly. "Ah, Miss Stirling. All ready?"
"Yes, but ..." She held up the champagne bottle. "The foil is loose and the ribbon is disturbed. It looks like someone tampered with it."
Mr. Pennington gave her the amused fatherly look he wore whenever she fussed over something trivial. "I'm sure it's nothing but rough handling."
"Very rough." She smoothed out the wrinkles and her worries and settled the bottle in its bucket.
"You've done a great job again. And look at all the people." Mr. Pennington gestured to the crowd. At least a hundred naval personnel and shipyard workers milled about.
Nausea seized Mary's belly. But why? None of the people looked at her. None of them had come to see her. She hadn't put herself on display. Yet logic and panic never listened to each other.
"I — I'm all done, Mr. Pennington." Mary gripped the banister and scurried down the stairs, each step quelling the nausea.
"I'll see you after the launching."
Mary waved over her shoulder and headed toward the back of the crowd to watch the ceremony. To one side, a cluster of shipyard workers praised President Roosevelt's newly signed Lend-Lease bill to send billions of dollars of aid to Britain. To the other side, another cluster of workers denounced the legislation as nothing but warmongering.
Although Mary certainly didn't want American boys to die in another European war, the images of bombed-out London wrenched her heart. The United States had to do something or Britain would fall.
A laugh filtered through the noise, a familiar male laugh, tickling at her memory.
Across a parting in the crowd, she saw two naval officers in navy blue overcoats and caps — "covers" in the naval jargon. One man had fair hair and one had dark.
The dark-haired officer had a friendly, open face, very much like Jim Avery from back home in Vermilion, Ohio. Except Jim was tall and scrawny, and this man was tall and ... not scrawny.
Jim had attended the Naval Academy, and Mary hadn't seen him since high school. A lot could happen to a person in five years.
Mary inched closer, and with each step the officer looked more like Jim Avery, except he held himself straighter, with more assurance.
He laughed at something his friend said, and in a flash, Mary was sitting around a table at the soda fountain with her best friend Quintessa Beaumont, Quintessa's boyfriend Hugh Mackey, and Hugh's best friend, Jim. All of them enraptured by Quintessa's effervescence.
Jim's gaze drifted to her, and he gave her the mild smile men gave silver girls like Mary, without the spark reserved for golden girls like Quintessa.
Oh, why had she come over? How silly of her. She returned the mild smile and angled her path away.
But Jim peered at her and took a step in her direction. "Mary? Mary Stirling?"
He actually remembered her? "Jim Avery?"
With a grin, he strode forward and gripped her hand. "Well, I'll be. What are you doing in Boston?"
"I work here. Almost four years now." She gestured to the grand expanses of scaffolding. "I'm a secretary." No need to go into prideful detail.
"Isn't that swell?" In the icy sunshine, his eyes were clearly hazel.
Had Mary ever noticed that before? "I assume the Navy brought you to town?"
Jim beckoned to his companion. "Mary, this is my friend, Archer Vandenberg. Arch, this is Mary Stirling from Ohio. Arch and I went to the Academy together, and we've just been assigned to the Atwood."
"Oh yes." The Gleaves-class destroyer had been launched at the shipyard in December and had almost completed the fitting-out process before commissioning.
"A pleasure to meet you, Mary." Arch spoke with the measured tones of upper-crust New England, but the shine in his blue eyes said he didn't deem a Midwestern secretary beneath his acquaintance. "Four years in Boston, did you say?"
"Say ..." Jim nudged his friend.
Arch crossed his arms and narrowed his eyes at Mary. "Yes, she'll do quite nicely."
She drew back. "Pardon?"
Jim laughed. "Never mind him. We were just talking about how we're new to town and wish we knew someone to show us around."
The thought of an excursion lifted her smile. "I could do that. I love exploring this city. So much history."
"Swell. I had visions of Jim and Gloria and I walking into the harbor while trying to navigate." Arch held up the launching program as if it were a map and squinted at it.
Jim dipped a partial bow. "And you'll save me from being the third wheel. Again."
What fun. Although Yvette was a dear friend, she socialized with French refugees, and Mary didn't speak French. "How about this Sunday? You could join me for church or meet me afterward."
"A real church with pews? That doesn't rock with the waves? Count us in." Jim pulled a pen from the breast pocket of his shirt. "Arch, you have something —"
"I have a notepad." Mary always did. She wrote down the church's address and sketched a map.
The band stopped playing. Mary passed Jim the slip of paper and turned to watch the ceremony under a bright blue sky. If only the temperature hadn't dipped to sixteen degrees, one detail Mary couldn't control.
The Ettinger filled her sight, sleek as an arrow, 348 feet in length and 36 feet across at the beam. Above her red hull, everything was painted gray. A string of colorful pennants swooped from her prow up to her mast and down to her stern.
Mary pressed up on her toes. What a joy to watch ceremonies as keels were laid down and ships were launched. Thank goodness her grandfather and Mr. Pennington had become fast friends in school.
The dignitaries climbed onto the platform. Then the band played the national anthem, while Mary pressed her hand over her heart and Jim and Arch stood at attention and saluted.
After the anthem, Mr. Pennington approached the microphone and thanked a list of people. He adjusted his glasses. "Today I realized I've been remiss. Never once at a launching have I thanked the person who works behind the scenes, making sure every little detail is in place, from the programs in your hands to the supplies at my feet."
Mary's breath rushed in and turned to bile. He wouldn't. No, he wouldn't. She eased behind Jim, behind the shield of his navy blue back.
"That person is my lovely secretary, Miss Mary Stirling. Miss Stirling, would you please join me on stage?"
No, no, no. She pressed her hand over her stomach, willing it to settle. Why hadn't she made some mistake, forgotten some detail, missed some deadline?
"Mary? What's the matter?" Jim looked over his shoulder at her, the visor of his cap hiding his expression.
"I can't. I just can't."
Silence. Then he nodded and faced the stage. His shoulders stretched even broader. "I haven't seen Mary, have you, Arch? Not a sign of her."
"Who? Never heard of the girl."
Mary took slow, even breaths, grateful for her inconspicuous hair and hat and coat, for Jim's height and protection and whatever miraculous physical fitness they taught at Annapolis.
"Miss Stirling?" Mr. Pennington called over the buzz of the crowd. "Well, she must be hard at work. Let's get on with the launching."
Mary peeked around Jim's shoulder as Mr. Pennington introduced Massachusetts state senator Ralston Fuller and his wife, Dorothy, the Ettinger's sponsor. The mahogany fur on Mrs. Fuller's coat danced in the breeze.
Senator Fuller gave a speech, the chaplain intoned the "Prayer for Our Navy," and the commandant, Rear Adm. William Tarrant, presented the bottle of champagne to Mrs. Fuller.
She held the bottle aloft. "In the name of the United States, I christen thee Ettinger. May God bless her and all that sail in her." She smashed the bottle over the hull, and the crowd erupted in applause.
The destroyer slipped down the ways and into Boston Harbor, sending giant roaring wings of water arcing on each side.
Mary's delight flowed out in her sigh, forming white curlicues in the frosty air.
Up on the stage, Mrs. Fuller yelped, jumped back, and swatted at her coat.
Chuckles swept the crowd.
"Must have gotten champagne on that fancy fur coat," Jim said.
But everyone on stage stepped back, staring at the champagne spill. "Put out your cigarettes!" someone shouted.
The men flung down their cigarettes, stomped on them.
What was going on? Mary stepped out from behind Jim.
Senator Fuller dropped his cigar, and tiny orange flames flickered around it. Mrs. Fuller screamed. Mr. Pennington tossed down Mary's rags and smothered the flames.
A murmur started at the stage and rolled out through the audience. "Gasoline."
The word slammed into Mary's chest. "The bottle."
"The bottle?" Jim frowned at her.
"The champagne bottle. I knew something was wrong.
The foil was loose. Thank goodness no one was hurt."
"You think someone ..."
"Poured out the champagne and put in gasoline. Then replaced the cork and the foil."
"But who? Why?"
"I don't know, but I'm going to find out." She almost smiled at the intrigued look on Jim's face. "Excuse me, but I think the police will want to talk to me."
"I'll see you Sunday." Jim winked at her. "Unless you're in jail."
"I won't be." Her fingerprints on the bottle would be expected, and since she'd called Mr. Pennington's attention to the tampering, she wouldn't be considered a suspect.
As she worked her way through the crowd to the stage, her Nancy Drew theories seemed more and more plausible.
She'd discounted her instincts, but she was right. If only she'd pressed Mr. Pennington further and investigated more.
Who would do such a thing? And why?
Did a political rival want to harm Senator Fuller or his wife? Did someone hope to keep the Ettinger off the seas? Did someone want to discredit the Boston Navy Yard? Was it a saboteur?
A thrill tingled up her spine. Not only did she have an excursion to anticipate, but she had her very own mystery.
Excerpted from Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin. Copyright © 2015 Sarah Sundin. Excerpted by permission of Revell.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
My review from inkwellreviews.com (Christian book review site) I don’t know about you but I love everything about the 1950’s. From their fashion to their music, I am obsessed with it all. So whenever I saw that this book was based in that time period, I knew I had to give it a try. This was my very first time to ever read anything by Sarah Sundin and I must say, I was very impressed. Her character development is off the charts. I felt as if Mary Stirling, the main character, could step out of the book and into real life. The same goes for all the other characters. I felt the like storyline was also very well thought out. It seemed like Sarah Sundin put a lot of time and energy into it writing this book and really thought out what her readers would enjoy. She doesn’t strike me as an author who just needed to come out with a book to keep her writing status up. This isn’t your average suspense and intrigue book, it was more of a historical romance/mystery, but it had enough uncertainty to keep you interested throughout the book. In the middle, there was certain turn of events that I could have done without but that is strictly based on preference. At times it seemed a little cheesy and maybe a little predicable, but no book is perfect, right? Through Waters Deep is defiantly a lighthearted book that will make you smile. From its witty characters to the world that they live in, I have to say it was one my favorite reads this year. Sincerely hope you check it out.
Monday, August 24, 2015 Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin, © 2015 Book 1 in the Waves of Freedom Series Espionage and unrest within, Mary Stirling begins her search for the perpetrator. As an invisible stenographer, Mary is free to roam the Boston Navy Yard unsuspected as she collects the morning reports for her boss, Barton Pennington. Mary is doing a little collecting here and there, herself. Using shorthand, she makes notes of conversations within her notebook, compiling information that would not otherwise be overheard. Mary Stirling: It all began to be for certain as suspicions came clear at the christening of the new destroyer, the USS Ettinger. I called to my boss that the bottle of champagne had been tampered with ~ before he took it to launch the ship and he smiled and waved me off. I went to the edge of the crowd of viewers, hoping to be swallowed up in the proceedings so as not to be noticed. Sure enough, Mr. Pennington is calling my name to come to the platform. Thankfully, hidden among those gathering, I go undetected. I do not like to be called attention to before crowds of people. Being silent in my duties is more comfortable for me! Ensign Jim Avery: Mary Stirling. What a surprise, the best friend of Quintessa Beaumont, the girl I have had on my mind for a long time ~ one of those memories hard to put at rest. My friend, Archer Vandenberg, and I are new to Boston, assigned to the new destroyer, USS Atwood. Mary and I were school friends back in Ohio ~ well, I was a tagalong hoping to catch Quintessa eye. There is more to Mary than I remember of the quiet girl who stayed in the background. A deepness that resonates solidness and care. FBI Agent Sheffield: At first I dismissed Mary Stirling as a Nancy Drew wannabe, but as reports became obvious, I thought better about negating her. Mainly, her persistence in contacting me, and the urgency of having our office within the shipyard. She wasn't far off in her speculations, in fact, she was a valuable asset to the contacts needed to apprehend the person or persons responsible for the detriment against the USS destroyers. Agent Hayes and I began following up on her right-on clues. Historical fiction is interesting to me because the research the authors do, placing their characters within the events/happenings of the time, is so much greater than what we may have learned in school. Through Waters Deep covers March 18, 1941 to December 7, 1941, a time in history of unrest preceding the attack at Pearl Harbor. I liked the depth of the characters as they unveil who they are and who they perceive themselves to be. So much more strength than they realize until tested. Mary was my favorite as she is selfless along with being unsure, she puts others before herself. Untried, she is uncertain of where her interest lies. She is sure that she wants country honor and right to prevail. ***Thank you to author Sarah Sundin for inviting me to review the first book in her Waves of Freedom series and to Revell for sending me a review copy. This review was written in my own words. No other compensation was received.***
Through Waters Deep #1 Waves of Freedom by Sarah Sundin Through Waters Deep is a gripping, historical story that takes us back to March 1941 and the months leading up to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. I enjoyed the two main characters, Mary Stirling and Naval officer Ensign Jim Avery, and many of the secondary characters. My husband was in the Navy for four years so I am rather fond of stories involving the Navy and found this story to be especially interesting. The sabotage adds mounting suspense as Jim and Mary investigate who the culprits are and I enjoyed trying to figure out from all the many possible suspects who the actual saboteur is. With so many possible suspects it was not an easy task for me or for Mary and Jim. The anger, intense tension and increasing conflict between those who wanted war and those who did not was a key part of the story-line. Their feelings were clearly felt in their attitudes and actions. I could almost feel the tension as split-second decisions were made with lives being placed on the line as a result of those decisions. I especially appreciate the spiritual elements woven throughout the story-line and how Mary and Jim grew in their faith and their trust in God in all areas of their lives. A truly gripping, drama filled with sabotage, prejudices, hope, past guilt, twists and turns, surprises, trust, love, strong faith and historical detail for an amazing story.
An excellent book and highly recommended – This book has a little something for everyone -- love, action, sabotage, heroic acts to name just a few. Although fiction, many "scenes" take place in and around historical places during the 1940's just before America officially entered WWII after Pearl Harbor was attacked. If a story can keep the reader on the edge of his/her seat, then this one does. It is so well written it just draws the reader in.
Another wonderful historical novel by Ms. Sundin!! I have loved and dearly enjoyed each novel I pick up by Ms. Sundin. Through Waters Deep is no exception! Ms. Sundin skillfully transports us back in time to Boston in 1941. If there was one thing I appreciated the most about this novel it would be the superb attention to historic detail. Whenever I began reading I lost all track of time and what was going on around me, I was totally immersed into the time period. The details Ms. Sundin includes about the navy are a testament to the thorough research she accomplished. She made everything easy to understand. Additionally, I loved the saboteur plot! I felt like I was right alongside Mary, trying to work out the mystery myself. Those of you who know me, know how much I enjoy a good mystery and this one met my approval. Without this, the story would have lacked something. I thought it was well done and the conclusion satisfactory. I admired the way both Jim and Mary grew over time. From beginning to end, they had changed in a positive way for the better. This book has not been a disappointment! Rather, it's another shining gem among Ms. Sundin's other novels. I'm eager to start Anchor in the Storm! If you have a propensity for World War II novels, or if you simply love a good historical read, this book is for you. :-) I checked this book out at my local library. No review required!
Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin is the first book in the Waves of Freedom series. Mary Stirling works as a secretary at the Boston Navy Yard in 1941. She has been working there for the last four years after moving away from her hometown of Vermilion, Ohio. Mary has just finished setting up for the launch of a new ship when she spots Jim Avery. Jim is from Vermilion (they grew up together). Mary liked Jim in high school, but Jim was infatuated with Mary’s best friend, Quintessa Beaumont (who was dating someone else). They start talking while they watch the launch ceremonies. After the champagne bottle is stroke against the ship, there is a commotion. Someone had changed out the champagne for gasoline (sabotage). This gets Mary excited. She loves mysteries and this gives her an opportunity to investigate a real crime. Mary and Jim start spending time together along with his friend, Arch and his girlfriend. They share a kiss just before Jim is shipped out on the destroyer Atwood. While Jim is away, Quintessa moves to town with the intentions of dating Jim (poor Mary). On the Atwood more sabotage is discovered. What is going on? Mary is determined to find out. To find out who is behind the sabotage and what happens to Jim and Mary, you will have to read Through Waters Deep. Through Waters Deep was a good story. I was drawn in immediately. The book is a little predictable (the romance especially), but the novel is well-written. I enjoyed the characters and could relate to them (especially Mary). I liked that the book contained a mystery. We get to follow Mary through her investigation into the sabotage. I give Through Waters Dep 4 out of 5 stars. The next book in the series will tell the story of Jim’s friend, Arch Vandenberg (Anchor in the Storm April). I received a complimentary copy of Through Waters Deep from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
‘Through Waters Deep’ is the very impressive first book I have read by Sarah Sundin; it is also first in her latest series, Waves of Freedom, set during WWII with characters actively involved. There are many things I was unaware of, including the varied feelings about sending our military to Europe to fight, the large number of women and non-military employees working at the Naval Yard, and sabotage to our equipment by our people. It is a sweeping novel of romance, intense suspense, and mystery. Mary Stirling is a young woman from the Midwest who has worked in the office at the Yard for four years and enjoys it. She chooses to not be in a spotlight in any area of her life, as she does not want pride to ever run her life again. Mary and an old classmate ran into each other; Ensign Jim Brady and his friend Archer would soon be going out onboard ship. Mary and Jim accompanied Arch and his fiancé when their schedules fit. Mary remembered how Jim had, and seemingly still has, unrequited love for Mary’s best friend Quintessa, so she had no illusions that there would be more than friendship between them. Jim, knowing he would be leaving soon, also wanted only Christian friendship. Yet they grew closer with each passing week, neither wanting to admit their feelings. Sabotage began to occur at the Naval Yard, including a bomb placed on one of the ships that fortunately was discovered before detonation. Other areas included work not passing inspection even when done according to plan. Mary, a huge fan of early Nancy Drew mysteries of her high school days, was in a unique position to gather information as she collected or distributed reports around the yard, especially listening to the various factions the workers fell into. She became a target when some of those men discovered her role, and Jim’s ship encountered danger from Nazis on the high seas, it became a pulse-pounding, exciting novel like none other. Mary and Jim are very well described; they are highly likable, honorable and share their faith in Christ. We learn a bit about Arch and Quintessa; both are also likable. Employees of the Naval Yard, FBI men, and others are known minimally through conversations and actions. I didn’t like the FBI men as they at first as they weren’t sure her notes were any more than the imagination of a wannabe Nancy Drew or if the notes were accurate, and later did not want her to endanger herself. It was hard to know who might be possible saboteurs, especially with the extreme prejudice and those in factions who brought hard to other. The author weaves an exhilarating story that is intriguing and has excellent spiritual lessons. It was hard to put it down! The plot is believable and intricate; trying to figure out who the bad guys or gals were was nearly impossible. There were plot twists and turns, dangers and emotions that heighten throughout the novel. The ending came too quickly yet with loose ends tied up and background incidents better understood. I highly recommend ‘Through Waters Deep’ to those interested in Christian WWII fiction with women central to the story. If one likes mystery, pulse-pounding suspense, and a possibility of romance, it is a worthy read. Sarah Sundin is one of my latest favorite authors; I’m looking forward to reading more of her novels. With a grateful heart, I won a copy of this book from The Book Club Network. All opinions are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.
Through Waters Deep is perhaps Sarah Sundin’s best book to date. Quiet, unassuming Mary Stirling works as a secretary in Boston’s shipyard. Mary enjoys her anonymity and uses it to do her Nancy Drew-like sleuthing as rumors of sabotage abound. Jim Avery, an ensign in the US Navy, is waiting for construction of the USS Atwood to be completed so he can prove his worth as a naval officer. These two former high school acquaintances meet while at the shipyard where isolationists and interventionists are not afraid to voice their opinions on the war that rages in Europe and some wonder if there are not Nazi spies amongst them. There is so much to the story of Through Waters Deep. Sundin is a master at creating relatable characters. Not just relatable, but characters so real I feel as though I have met the personally. It was fun watching Mary and Jim grow and step up to do what was right regardless of how terrifying it might be. There is drama, action, mystery and romance in Through Waters Deep, something for every reader. I am looking forward to the next book in this series!
A thrilling and beautiful story set in 1941 with the US on the brink of WWll. This was my first book by author Sarah Sundin and I must say that I wasn't disappointed. Her amazing descriptions and stunning historical detail made for a vivid story and a thrilling learning experience about WWll. Mary Stirling is the heroine of this book, she is a thoughtful, caring young woman and a very likable character. Her quiet manner was something our hero never thought that he would like in a woman but as the story developed and their friendship grows stronger he finds himself drawn to her in a way that he has never quite felt. However, one weakness of our dear heroine was that she avoided all attention that could be brought to her and in all honesty this alone isn’t a bad thing for someone to not really want attention, however her reasoning to me was rather childish in my opinion but other than that I loved her character. Jim Avery is fun and outgoing character in personality and is very easygoing, as the story proceeded he has to learn to not just "float" through life but to "make a wave" in life, this is something Mary had to learn as well, considering she had problems with getting attention and since she had a fairly easygoing personality as well this was something they both had to learn. Because the characters both had pretty laid back personality’s there were a few misunderstandings that came between them and since Jim kept being shipped out to sea there wasn't much time to correct those things and at times that was slightly annoying to me. Nevertheless, their romance was a believable one because throughout most of the book they were simply friends and I really enjoyed that aspect of their relationship and quite honestly I found it rather beautiful. All in all, the book was fantastic and I would definitely read it again! I give it 4 stars and cannot wait to read the next book in the series. If you like a good historical mystery I believe you too might enjoy this book! I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.
It didn't take long to start rooting for Jim and Mary to get together as a couple. Neither was ready for a romance but circumstances and the excitement of sharing the mystery of who was sabotaging the Naval shipyard and sharing the clues was a delightful start of a romance. There was a lot of action on the boats and in the Naval yard that kept me guessing up to the end. I liked the element of faith, friendship and the quiet romance that grew between Jim and Mary. Historical fiction with a suspense, mystery, adventure and just the right touch of romance. I enjoyed this story.. I was gifted a copy to review from NetGalley, I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction with romance and suspense.
Sarah Sundin's newest book Through Waters Deep was a delightful surprise to me. It is another of her World War II stories set in the months just prior to the United States entering the war. The interesting part is that it is a completely new series but it contains some characters that we have met previously in another of her books. At first I just kept thinking that I had read a similar story and then it hit me . . . I know these people and their families. Once I realized that the pages just flew by. Mary Stirling is the main female character and she is a complex mix of reserved behind the scenes worker and diligently bold detective. If you grew up reading the Nancy Drew series you are going to enjoy Mary. Naval officer Ensign Jim Avery has known Mary since childhood but for the first time he is really noticing her. His dilemma is does he want to become involved with anyone who is so different from what he usually gravitates to? In the past he's always been drawn to bubbly blondes and a specific blonde at that. But in Mary's presence he feels a peace that has always been missing. The story contains the many twists and turns that we have come to expect from Sundin's writing. I think what I enjoy most is that this isn't just a war story and it isn't just a romance. Instead it is a mix of mystery, intrigue, and romance filled with characters that will entertain you as well as strengthen your faith. I can almost guarantee that this will be a book that my reading group picks for a future read. There are a set of discussion questions in the back of the book that will help any book club get started. I look forward to reading the rest of this series and if you like historical romance I think you will too. I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
I was first introduced to Sarah Sundin’s work by her novella, I’ll Be Home For Christmas, in the anthology, Where Treetops Glisten. I enjoyed her tale of finding love, and was drawn-in by her writing style, so I was certain I’d like her newest book, Through Waters Deep. I’ve read several WWII era books this past year or two, becoming entranced by the historical tragedies as well as the resilience of the human heart. So many emotions encircle the past, and placing the setting for a book among them will draw me in every time. Told from two points of view (Mary Stirling, and her childhood friend naval officer Jim Avery) this story begins in 1941, at the cusp of the U.S. participation in WWII. Mary, a Boston Navy Yard secretary, attempts to help the FBI figure out who is behind the USS Atwood’s sabotage. Of course, feelings and blockades arise, complications and misunderstandings ensue, and the reader rides the waves of this romantic story. A wonderfully romantic historical. I received a Review Copy from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the options I have expressed are my own.
Through Waters Deep is the first book I have read from Susan Sundin and it was fabulous. I was hooked from the beginning. Sundin’s book had it all - mystery, suspense, romance, friendship, surprises and tension. She has a way of writing that makes you want to grab your highlighter because the words move you and you do not want to forget them. Sundin’s writing is wonderful but her historical research was superb. She wove the history in where it was not overwhelming but supplemented the story well. I felt as if I was right there inside the story. Plus, I learned somethings about World War II that I had not known before. The main character, Mary, is very easy to like. She is quiet, efficient at her job, and very humble. Jim is an admirable character. I enjoyed seeing Mary and Jim’s friendship develop and how they supported each other in difficult times. This book inspired me to listen more and be a better friend. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. This is a story you do not want to miss! Thank you to Litfuse Chicks for a free copy of this book in exchange for my review. No monetary compensation was received and all opinions expressed are my own.
Sarah Sundin's Wings of Nightingale series,which features World War II nurses serving in the European war theater, was packed with lots of fast paced action and danger, along with heartfelt personal stories and romance. I expected something similar from THROUGH WATERS DEEP, the first book in Sundin's new series Waves of Freedom, but Sundin has concentrated on a different time and place for this title. It is fall 1941 and America has not yet entered the war. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt has signed the Lend Lease Act which will send planes, ships, and other military materials to bolster England's defense. Reaction back here in America is mixed, and that is especially true at the Boston Navy Yard where defense workers are on a tight schedule to turn out as many ships as possible. When the christening of a new ship is sabotaged, many believe that it is the work of a Nazi sympathizer and point their fingers at a German immigrant at the yard, but others believe that the sabotage may actually be the work of someone who wishes to push America into a full blown war effort. Mary Stirling, a Navy Yard secretary, realizes that her job is the perfect foil for hearing, seeing, and recording the unrest developing among the workers. At first when she shares her "reports" with the authorities, they laugh at her attempts to be a "Nancy Drew" but she continues to snoop. Meanwhile she encounters a childhood friend, Jim Avery, now a Navy ensign. Soon she knows her feelings go beyond friendship but remains silent knowing that Jim still carries a torch for her best friend. Jim encourages her to keep snooping, but also worries about her safety. I've always enjoyed Sundin's writing, and while I enjoyed both Mary and Jim and their personal stories in the novel, I was slightly disappointed in the overall plot. I want my historical fiction to be as accurate as possible and I felt THROUGH DEEP WATERS slightly missed the target here. Yes, there really was much dissension here at home prior to entering the war and Sundin does an excellent job of capturing that emotional tension but there was never any "terrorism" or "sabotage" as depicted in the story. Clearly Sundin felt justified in creating a sabotage event for the story since there was actual fear of it happening, but I felt cheated by having sabotage be a key element of the book. I don't know what mystery or suspense Sundin could have created for Mary to be part of, but I wish it had been something more authentic. On a positive note, I liked the humor and heartbreak added by Jim's wealthy friend who was seeking a girl not influenced by his money. Also, Jim's brothers, also Navymen, are introduced (from a distance) and that prepares readers for the next books in the series. Since this book ends as Japan attacks Pearl Harbor, I assume the brothers' stories will be set in the thick of World War II and we know that Sundin can write good fiction about the war action. I received a copy of this novel from Revell Reads for my honest review.
Mary Stirling is an efficient and conscientious secretary with Boston Navy Yard in 1941, preferring to stay behind the scenes unnoticed. So when there is evidence of sabotage, Mary decides she is the perfect person to gather information and to keep notes on anyone suspicious. During the launching of USS Ettinger, Mary encounters a former high school friend, Jim Avery. He is now a naval officer and stationed in Boston and they become reacquainted and their friendship grows when Jim decides to help Mary with her investigation. Tensions run high as America is on the brink of war and everyone is doubtful of one another loyalties. This story showed good character development. Both of the main characters had to face a “moment of truth” where they had to make a critical decision that was risky and dangerous. The characters also wrestled with “demons” from the past and grew in maturity as the story progressed. It was obvious the author was knowledgeable about the subject matter because she used appropriate terminology in describing the naval yard and the ships. The plot was engaging and there was suspense and surprises toward the end of the book. I would recommend this book if you enjoy romances and the World War II time period. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for an honest review.
Sarah Sundin's novel, Through Waters Deep is an intriguing look at WWII from behind the lines and through the eyes of a young woman working as a naval secretary in Boston. If you love mysteries and/or history you will find this story riveting. Throw in some good old fashioned romance and Sundin has written a real winner. Mary Stirling calls herself the invisible secretary because people tend to forget that she is around. As a result, they let down their guard and Mary is privy to conversations that many others do not hear. Just as the US is on the brink of joining the war in earnest, it appears that there is evidence of sabotage at the Naval Shipyard where Mary works. Mary, along with a child-hood friend, Jim begin to gather clues to determine what is going on and attempt to stop it before more danger erupts. As I read this novel I was transported back in time. The language and terminology that Sundin used created a realist environment for her characters and her story line to unfold. Her attention to detail made this story believable and enjoyable. I highly recommend it.
I absolutely loved this book! The story was mysterious, intriguing, and hard to put down! I thought that the characters were well developed throughout the story too. The main character, Mary Stirling, has quite a transformation as she learns to conqueror an old fear from her childhood. The historical aspect is always an interesting one especially concerning the WWII era. It's crazy to even think that several boats were sunk or damaged before the Pearl Harbor incident that propelled us into the war. If you love the WWII era and are looking for a new series to start, then make sure to pick up this book. I am really looking forward to the next book in the series coming out summer of 2016. ***I received this free book from Revell Books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Take a journey back to 1941 and the Boston Navy Yard with Sarah Sundin's latest release, Through Deep Waters. Filled with historical gems, romantic tension, and a mystery to solve, Through Deep Waters will draw you in and have you thinking like Nancy Drew right along side Mary Stirling and Ensign Jim Avery. I have an affinity for WWII era novels and have loved the books I've read from Sarah. With that in mind, I had high hopes for this first book in her new series, "Waves of Freedom". I really enjoyed this first book and the story Sarah weaved through the lives of shy and orderly Mary Stirling and calm and easygoing Navy man Jim Avery. One of my favorite things about Through Deep Waters was the ability to see the surroundings of Boston, the Navy Yard, and the Navy ship the Atwood. I loved all of the details about life during this time period and can trust that Sarah has done her homework with regards to accuracy in the time period. You will actually feel as if you're right there, jumping pack in time with the characters. I also loved the element of mystery. Being a Nancy Drew fan myself, I enjoyed the suspicion of sabotage at the Navy Yard and Mary and Jim's efforts to find the culprit. There's nothing better than the element of mystery and a well equipped sleuthing team. Through Deep Waters will appeal to fans of historical romance, mystery, and anyone who enjoys the tension of romance lingering in the air. It has the atmosphere of the 1940s that you'll remember from movies like Shop Around The Corner, Arsenic and Old Lace, and Sergeant York. My recommendation? Read it! Originally posted on my blog: http://eahendryx.blogspot.com/2015/08/through-deep-waters-by-sarah-sundin.html _______________ I received a free copy of this book for review purposes, but was under no obligation to read the book or post a review. I do so under my own motivation and the opinions I have expressed in this review are honest and entirely my own.
Love Sarah Sundin's latest! Sarah Sundin is one of the best WWII fiction authors out there. I've really come to enjoy her books and so I have looked forward to the release of Through Waters Deep. The book lived up to and exceeded expectations as her books always do. I loved the addition of suspense with the sabotage angle. Sarah Sundin has a way of painting pictures with words. The reader is transported into the pre-war atmosphere, and I felt like I was right there walking the streets of Boston and the decks of the Atwood. I actually learned quite a bit while reading this book. I had never heard the terms 'isolationist' and 'interventionist' nor had I ever really thought about how intentionally blind to the impending war that many Americans were. Sarah Sundin successfully and subtly blended a little history lesson into this very entertaining story. I really liked how Mary and Jim didn't always have it all together. Past mistakes continue to influence them, in Jim's not wanting to make waves and Mary's fear of calling attention to herself. But dangerous situations don't exactly allow for that, both will have to take action in ways that will take them far out of their comfort zones. Through Waters Deep has one of the loveliest covers. It really matches the uncertainty and drama of the story and leads the mind back to days gone by. The red dress was a nice touch as readers will recognize the nod to Mary's blossoming and tentative choosing of the bright color. Historical fiction and WWII fiction fans are in for a real treat in Through Waters Deep, a story that is not to be missed! (I received a copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.)
_____________________ *My Thoughts* If I had money, I would have an auto-buy list. If I had an auto-buy list, I would have Sarah Sundin at the top of that list. Actually, even that wouldn't be enough to satisfy my "World War 2 Sarah cravings". I'm not even kidding you, she is that good. By far the best in World War 2 fiction! I love that her books are so real. I feel like I could be Mary-1940s style dress and all. Of course, the fact that I had a hairstyle strikingly similar to hers, probably didn't help. It has all the feelings one would think they would experience during the on-coming of a war while still perfectly capturing life before it all began. You can picture the towns and places Sarah is describing-like you could be sitting in someone's kitchen listening to the radio play in the other room. You can feel the terror and confusion they all must have felt. The fierce sense of service when young men marched through to enlist. The longing the young women had to help. The characters' relationships were all very believable and there was nothing corny about any of it. I loved "watching" Jim and Mary's former friendship be re-established. The suspense within the story was perfectly played out. It kept me guessing until the very end while not overtaking the book. It was a beautiful story from beginning to end and one I thoroughly enjoyed! Jim's friend Arch was a side character in this book but is the main protagonist in the next story and I can't wait!! He adds humor to the story and was a lovely edition. Book 2 can't come soon enough. I hope Sarah's ready because I will be stalking her for book 3's release date before I even read book 2! ___________________ *Audience* This is a perfect book for those who love history. Especially those that want more then just facts. If you're a romance lover, this book is also for you! Fantastically written to engage a large span of people, this book is perfect from young teens on up to 90 year old women looking for a good story. ________________________ *My overall thoughts* Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin is definitely in my top favorites this year. (I've read 105 so far!) The story engaged me from the very beginning and I didn't want it to end. I was close to shedding tears when I reached the last page. Can't wait for the next one! _______________ *My Rating* I give Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin... 5 stars!! *I received this book from the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review, which I have given. All thoughts were my own and I was not compensated in any other way. http://bookreviewsforchristians.blogspot.com/2015/08/revell-review-through-waters-deep-by.html
A look at the book list on Sarah Sundin’s website indicates that Through Waters Deep is her eighth published book. In her acknowledgments section in the book she mentions that she is new to mystery writing. Well, I never would have guessed that while reading this book, and am glad that she has another mystery in this Waves of Freedom series in the works. While Ms Sundin is described as a World War II author, this was also her first book about the Navy. She was quite brave to take on a new genre and a new area of research simultaneously, and she pulled it off marvelously. Through Waters Deep is set in 1941, as America struggles in its decision as to whether to enter another war or to refrain unless directly attacked. Emotions run high on both sides of the argument. There are some who might take matters into their own hands, arranging circumstances to sway public opinion. Mary Sterling, a secretary in the Boston Navy Yard, an unlikely detective, is pulled into the intrigue of identifying a saboteur who might be trying to do just that. Ensign Jim Avery, a high school friend of Mary’s, supports her investigation even though he is anxious about her safety, and wonders about the possibility of a budding romance; that is until the vibrant Quintessa , Mary’s best friend and Jim’s high school crush, arrives on the scene. Sabotage, mystery, and romance, all ingredients for a great read, are included in just the right combination. I loved that the mystery is introduced on the first page of the story. Sundin’s pool of suspects is like the ripples from tossing a stone into a pond, every growing circles, with a bulls-eye forming in the center. The circumstances surrounding the mystery and the events that unfold are plausible, and there is no magically pulling out new facts or characters at the end in order to solve the mystery. Red herrings are seamlessly woven into the story. Sundin followswhat P.D. James refers to as the fair play rule. The information that is available to the detective is also available to the reader, but clues are provided with “deceptive cunning.” The research that went into writing Through Waters Deep is well evident. Sundin’s care to use era appropriate vocabulary, especially in naming places in Boston, demonstrates her detailed research, as does her knowledge and use of naval terminology. The feel she got from exploring ships, climbing inside naval gun mounts, and touring Boston, including historical Charlestown, comes through, heightening the reader’s senses as they are immersed in the story’s setting. Sundin’s protagonist, Mary Sterling, deals with the issue of pride; the reader will cheer her on as she learns to differentiate between using one’s God given gifts and talents to draw attention to self and using them to glorify the Giver. Ensign Jim Avery floats through life, fearful of making waves that might bring about undesired consequences. The reader will share his heartache and struggle alongside him as he learns to find balance in his life. Sundin develops the readers’ attachment to even her secondary characters by focusing on the underlying motivations for their actions, motivations that readers can identify with. This novel, and others like it, make it clear why recent research has found evidence that literary fiction increases the readers ability to empathize. I thank Revell Publishers and Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for providing Through Waters Deep for my honest review
Have you read any of Sarah Sundin's WWII books? They are sooooo good! I love a book that makes me lose sleep to finish the next chapter...and the next, and each of Sarah's books has done that for me. Including this one! I know I'm not the only one. All the folks I know who've read them have said the same thing. Mary Stirling is a quiet brunette, the exact opposite of her best friend Quintessa--the vivacious blonde that Jim Avery is in love with, or was during high school. Mary can't hope to compete, but she can be his friend--even though she'd love to be so much more. Since high school, Mary's become a savvy secretary at the Navy Yard in 1941. It's obvious there's a saboteur there. Workers there are used to seeing her walking around taking notes, so that's exactly what she does. Jim is still the people-pleaser he was in school, hoping to make people like him, even though now he's an ensign on a destroyer with leadership duties that could force him to make unpopular decisions. He dreads and avoids giving any kind of order that might make waves. Last time he did that, his little sister lost her leg. He second-guesses everything. He and Mary are flung together in the middle of this turbulence. She can't help herself--she's falling in love--but he mustn't know he's anything more than a friend. On the other hand, he's having trouble forgetting that friendly kiss she was forced into giving him. He's second-guessing that too. When you get done reading Through Waters Deep, write a review for the author on Goodreads and/or any of the following distributors, okay? It's available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Christian Book Distributors. I received this book free in return for an honest review. And no, I didn't get a kickback from any of the bookstores either.
Once again, while reading one of Sarah Sundin’s books, I felt totally immersed in the time period of the story. This time, I traveled back to 1941, shortly before the United States would fully enter World War II. This story was a great combination of romance and the feeling of reading a Nancy Drew mystery. I enjoyed trying to determine who the saboteur was, right along with Mary. The author did a good job of providing many people in the story who could possibly have the motive and means to pull off the subterfuge going on in the book. I liked the romance thread in the book, as well. These two characters, Mary Stirling and Ensign Jim Avery were two people who had a lot to learn about life and relationships throughout the course of the story. I was frustrated, at times, with the fact that they both worked so hard to cover their growing feelings about each other. It just made my heart ache. But, their reticence in voicing their emotions about each other, Jim’s easygoing nature in his job on a naval destroyer, and even his usual attempts to stay away from hard decisions, were growing points for the two and made the conclusion of the book that much more satisfying. I am looking forward to reading more books in this series. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through Litfuse Publicity, in exchange for an honest review.
5 stars out of five Historical Fiction I am thoroughly immersed in Sarah Sundin’s novels that take place during World War II. Each of them is written with such a deep heart that I am convinced as I am reading it that not only is there a war going on in my backyard, but I am in the middle of it! Imagine my surprise when I step out of the story into my living room into a quiet, hot summer day! No thundering of explosives, no enemy to fear. Vivid imagery takes the reader into the book and makes the characters life long friends. Liberal usage of words describing all the senses makes for a memorable read and makes what could be a dull history lesson into living characters. There are references to past characters and incidents and having read the earlier books will make for a richer understanding of this story, but not having read them will not decrease your enjoyment of it. As such, i would venture to call this a stand alone novel. I received this the Ebook free from Litfuse Publicity Group through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. A positive critique was not required. The opinions written here are my own.
Gripping story! Through Deep Waters, By: Sarah Sundin Through Deep Waters is the first book in the Waves of Freedom Series. Sarah Sundin has done it yet again! She has created a story that is so wonderful! You will feel as though you have travel back in time to the World War II era. You will laugh, you will cry, you will be setting on the edge of your seat reading this wonderful book. A book that you can tell was a lot of devotion to research to make sure the history was right. Love such devotion it just makes the books even better. Love the history, love and suspense in this story. Keep up the wonderful writing! Be sure to get your copy of the book today! 5 stars!