The Girl On The Boat by Kate Hewitt

Powerful New Series

The Girl On The Boat by Kate Hewitt is a powerful historical novel that completely consumed me. It is the first book in The Emerald Sisters series which promises to be fabulous.

The action is set from 1939 – 1942 as we travel from Germany to New York. As the story opens, we ‘hear’ from after the war in the prologue. We know the time and the place and we ‘hear’ the outcome for several characters but we have questions – questions which will follow us through the series. I am assuming all answers will be revealed in the final book – I can’t wait but I’ll have to!

We follow a Jewish family as they board a ship, with other Jewish families, fleeing Germany for Cuba. Alliances are formed on board, and promises made to meet up in Paris one year after the war ends.

We ‘see’ the damage inflicted mentally on physically tortured souls. Men, who were the heads of families, are reduced to mere shells. It is the women who have to step up and become strong.

The novel follows a character to New York. Here, different problems are encountered.

We see that racial prejudice and injustice exists in America too. Here, people are judged by the colour of their skin and not the content of their character. This horrifies the character who fled Germany as she believed she was in the land of the free.

Tension builds as the months tick down. The reader knows that Pearl Harbor in December 1941 is approaching. There is nothing we can do about it. We cannot stop time nor warn the characters. We are passengers in the story heading to a moment in time.

All the characters are well drawn. They elicit a variety of responses from the reader.

As the novel ends, we are perfectly poised for book number two which I cannot wait to read.

I received a free copy from the publishers. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.


Book Description:

Germany, 1939: “Quickly, take this emerald. This was my late mother’s gem, and it will keep you safe. And I promise, we will all meet again in Paris…”

When Sophie Weiss boards the SS St Louis, she has no reason to stay in Germany. The Nazis have taken everything from her, and her only hope is escape. But when she meets fellow Jewish refugees RosaHannah and Rachel on board, the friendship they form gives Sophie hope that there can be happiness in her future, after all.

But their worst fears are realized when the boat is refused entry at a port they thought would be safe. Terrified of being sent back to Europe, the women cling together and desperately wait for news. At last, word reaches the ship that a friend of Sophie’s father is willing to take her in — but there is only room for her.

Quickly, Sophie unpicks the lining of her coat, revealing her late mother’s emerald hidden in the lining. She hands a piece of the precious stone to each of her friends, and the women promise to meet in Paris when this nightmare is over.

Watching the SS St Louis grow smaller on the horizon, Sophie’s heart breaks. How can she embrace her freedom when those she loves face an unknown fate? And what can she do to help them? Gripping her emerald with a fierce determination, she fixes her eyes on the boat: I will find a way to help you, no matter what…

This is the first book in the unmissable Emerald Sisters series that follows the incredible stories of four brave young women, as they each forge their futures against the backdrop of the Second World War. Perfect for fans of Roberta Kagan, Kristin Harmel and Kate Quinn.

Author Bio:

Kate Hewitt is the author of many romance and women’s fiction novels. A former New Yorker and now an American ex-pat, she lives in a small town on the Welsh border with her husband, five children, and their overly affectionate Golden Retriever. Whatever the genre, she enjoys telling stories that tackle real issues and touch people’s lives.

Sign up to be the first to hear about new releases from Kate Hewitt here:

Buy Link:


You can sign up for all the best Bookouture deals you’ll love at:

Sarah Hardy


Storyfire Ltd
Carmelite House
50 Victoria Embankment
London EC4Y 0DZ

Storyfire Limited, a member of Hachette UK Group, registered in England and Wales under company no. 7893911

Follow Bookouture on Facebook 
Follow Bookouture on Twitter 
Follow Bookouture on Instagram
Follow Bookouture on TikTok

If you’d like to sign up to our reviewer database you can sign up here

For the best deals on books you can’t put down, make sure to sign up to our Bookouture Deals mailing list!
Sign up here!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.