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Promise Me This by Cathy Gohlke
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's review
Mar 23, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: titanic

Promise Me This
By Cathy Golke
Tyndale House Publishing, 2012. 404 pages.

“Promise Me This” is one of the many fictional novels out that have a Titanic connection. It stands out in that it carries the reader from days before the Titanic sailing to days after World War I. Gohlke’s novel is an epic saga that touches on Christian themes of sacrifice and forgiveness.

Michael Dunnagan is a starving and abused boy of 15, who stows away on the first voyage of the Titanic from Belfast to Southampton. There he is discovered by Owen Allen, who gives him work as a gardener and friendship. Owen plans to take the Titanic to America where he will become partners with his uncle at his New Jersey nursery. Owen needs to escape his bitter aunt who controls the estate where he and his sister are wards. Owen wants to create a home in America before his young sister Anne becomes bitter like the aunt or is destroyed by the spinster aunt because Anne looks like her beautiful mother who married the estate’s gardener.

Owen’s Christian faith is strong in act and deed as he tries to guide Michael and Anne on a path of Christian responsibility, forgiveness, and faith. His impact is so strong, that Michael stows away on the Titanic again to follow Owen to America. Discovered, Owen takes care of Michael, then finds the boy a lifeboat and charges Michael with a promise – get my sister Anne to America.

The following years are not easy as the aunt does everything to destroy Anne. A romance through letters blossoms between Anne and Michael. The adventure through World War I will keep the reader turning the page with the hope that Michael will find Anne and fulfill his promise to Owen.

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