The Restless Sea by Vanessa De Haan is a well-crafted piece of historical fiction which explores the themes of friendship, loyalty and love.
De Haan’s research and ability to weave multiple perspectives, storylines and settings together is truly something to be admired. Her command of imagery brought the beauty of North Scotland to life, alongside the perilous waves of the Arctic sea and the icy climes of Archangel. It is also worth applauding how exquisitely she brings together the narratives of Jack, Charlie and Olivia.
However, towards the end as these narratives arrive at a climax and head for their resolutions, the plot becomes quite predictable and the ending is rather twee. I would also question if the novel needs to be as long as it is, hitting nearly 500 pages. Despite this, it is a great read which I would recommend, as long as you are willing to commit to the length of De Haan’s brilliant debut.