• Black Amazon Icon
  • Black Facebook Icon
  • Black Instagram Icon
  • Black Twitter Icon
  • Black Pinterest Icon
  • YouTube - Black Circle
  • book-bub-icon
Official Website of New York Times  Bestselling Author
steamship illustration.jpg

Coming  March 9, 2021


"The Titanic of the South"

“In Surviving Savannah, Patti Callahan masterfully weaves a little known historical tragedy, an enigmatic mystery, and a searing family saga into a mesmerizing tale that will captivate readers until the
last page and beyond." 


Pam Jenoff,
NYT Bestselling Author of The Lost Girls of Paris


steamship steam nautical.jpg

Praise For 



“The astonishing story of the “Titanic of the South” is brought to vivid life by Callahan, who effortlessly blends fact and fiction into a novel that I simply couldn’t put down. This tale of survival, love, and loss, as well as Callahan’s epic portrayals of
a trio of strong, passionate women, gripped

me from the very first page. Simply masterful."

Fiona Davis, NYT Bestselling Author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue

Surviving Savannah

"A seamless blending of fact and fiction" 

“Fans of Christina Baker Kline and Kate Quinn will love this beautiful, richly detailed novel about a lost bit of American maritime history. In a seamless blending of fact and fiction, Patti Callahan has created an atmospheric, compelling story of survival, tragedy, the enduring power of myth and memory, and the moments that change one's life."

Kristin Hannah

 #1 NYT Bestselling Author of 

The Great Alone & The Nightingale

“Through the interwoven tales of three courageous women, Surviving Savannah grips the reader in a spellbinding novel full of mystery, tragedy, sacrifice, and resilience. Layering painstaking research with evocative prose, Callahan has penned an utterly transportive read while illuminating a heart-wrenching yet largely forgotten slice of American history. Superb.”
Kristina McMorris,

NYT Bestselling Author of
Sold on a Monday


savannah historical houses .jpg

"A spellbinding novel full of mystery, tragedy, sacrifice, and resilience. 


SS promo vintage maps rotated.png

“Hidden history rises from the watery depths in all its glittering glory but also in its intimate, human detail. Meticulously researched, beautifully written, underpinned by timeless themes of personal trauma and its aftereffects, Surviving Savannah is a journey readers and book clubs will treasure.”


Lisa Wingate,
#1 New York Times Bestselling Author of Before We Were Yours and
The Book of Lost Fri

“A luminous novel about bravery, connection, and resilience that resurrects a forgotten 19th-century shipwreck and interlaces it with a page-turning contemporary narrative. With lush historical detail and a graceful pen, Callahan raises questions about fate, faith, and human purpose that are timeless.

Surviving Savannah has the luster of a secret that’s been pulled from the depths of the sea.”

Signe Pike, 

Bestselling author of

The Lost Queen & The Forgotten Kingdom

adventure stories background.jpg

"Surviving Savannah

has the luster of a secret that’s been pulled from the depths of the sea.”

Old vintage retro compass on ancient map

It was called "The Titanic of the South."  The luxury steamship sank in 1838 with Savannah's elite on board; through time, their fates were forgotten—until the wreck was found, and now their story is finally being told in this breathtaking novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Becoming Mrs. Lewis.

When Savannah history professor Everly Winthrop is asked to guest-curate a new museum collection focusing on artifacts recovered from the steamship Pulaski, she's shocked.


The ship sank after a boiler explosion in 1838, and the wreckage was just discovered, 180 years later. Everly can't resist the opportunity to try to solve some of the mysteries and myths surrounding the devastating night of its sinking.

Everly's research leads her to the astounding history of a family of eleven who boarded the Pulaski together, and the extraordinary stories of two women from this family: a known survivor, Augusta Longstreet, and her niece, Lilly Dawson, who was never found, along with her child. These aristocratic women were part of Savannah's society, but when the ship exploded, each was faced with difficult and heartbreaking decisions.


This is a moving and powerful exploration of what women will do to endure in the face of tragedy, the role fate plays, and the myriad ways we survive the surviving.

color 71.jpeg

Casimir Pulaski Monument in Savannah, or Pulaski Monument on Monterey Square, is a 19th-century monument to Casimir Pulaski, located in Monterey Square, on Bull Street, Savannah, Georgia, not far from the battlefield where Pulaski lost his life during the siege of Savannah.  The Steamship Pulaski was named after him.  

vintage map, compass, ship .jpg

In SURVIVING SAVANNAH, Patti Callahan has woven a sweeping, captivating tale; of a contemporary woman lost in a fog of grief who finds solace-- and finally, redemption as she uncovers the long-buried secrets of a nearly forgotten shipwreck—and the courageous women who survived to bear witness to history. Based in fact, steeped in heart-breaking detail, SURVIVING SAVANNAH raises the little-known, 180-year-old story of the Southern Titanic to the forefront of American historic fiction. 


Dear Friends, 


This summer is the 182nd anniversary (yes, one hundred and eighty-second) of the sinking of the Steamship Pulaski.


In the middle of the night, in the middle of the sea, a boiler exploded on the luxury steamship Pulaski with almost two hundred passengers on board. Over the next forty-five minutes, the ship floundered and sank as passengers and crew fought for survival. The stories of this ship often called the "Titanic of the South", and its passengers have only been told in part.

Until now.

Three years ago, a shipwrecked crew discovered the remains of the steamship a hundred feet beneath the waves, thirty miles off the coast of Wilmington, North Carolina. While the team brought up the artifacts and treasures of this beautiful ship, I discovered the stories of its passengers.


For years now I have been researching and writing this novel, and yet how could I have known how timely it would be? As I wrote about those who were faced with tragedy and hardship, as I wrote about their resilience, courage, and endurance, how could I have known how very relevant this story would be today? With a dual timeline novel that plumbs the depth of the sea and the subject of how we survive the surviving, I am thrilled to announce my new novel’s title and publication.


"What a marvelous tapestry
Patti Callahan has woven in 


In this spellbinding story of the tragic 1838 sinking of the Pulaski, the 'Titanic of the South', the reader confronts the harrowing disaster through the eyes of its few survivors while simultaneously experiencing the surprising epiphanies of the Pulaski shipwreck discovery, when history professor and curator Everly Winthrop pieces together the remnants of the past.

Beautifully written with a masterfully crafted plot,
SURVIVING SAVANNAH leaves the reader breathless and marveling at the manner in which the past and present interweave in ways we almost cannot imagine."  
Marie Benedict 

Bestselling Author of
The Only Woman in the Room & 
The Mystery of Mrs. Christie  

vintage nautical maps .jpg
old map compass.jpg

“In this lush, vibrant novel by the indomitable Patti Callahan, one can feel with incredible vibrancy the raw terror aboard a sinking steamship in the darkness, the searing pain of loss, the modern-day mystery of a ghost ship unearthed in the ocean’s depth.


Callahan splashes every scene with rich life, delivering the reader straight to the heart of the story, which is a rich tale of friendship, heritage, forgiveness, redemption, and the thin, too-fragile line between life and death. “How will we survive the surviving?” one of her characters wonders, and it is a question that Callahan mines beautifully.


If you’re fascinated by the Titanic, meet your new favorite novel, a lush, vibrant based-on-a-true-story tale that toggles effortlessly between present and past, as a doomed ship sets out to sea, forever changing the fate of the mysterious, moss-draped city of Savannah.”


Kristin Harmel,
NYT Bestselling Author of

The Book of Lost Names

Bud Johnson Photography-color-82 (2) TOU
A New York Times Bestselling Author
Podcast Host ​and Co-creator of 
Friends & Fiction 

Patti Callahan Henry is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of fifteen novels, including the (Historical Fiction), BECOMING MRS. LEWIS—The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis (writing as Patti Callahan).  In addition, she is the recipient of The Christy Award—A 2019 Winner "Book of the Year.” ; The Harper Lee Distinguished Writer of the Year for 2020 and the Alabama Library Association Book of the Year for 2019.  
The author is also the host of the popular seven-part original "Behind the Scenes of Becoming Mrs. Lewis Podcast Series" launched,  October 2019. The podcast audiobook collection including bonus material was released in January 2020.  The new expanded Becoming Mrs. Lewis paperback edition was released in March 2020. 
On March 9, 2021, SURVIVING SAVANNAH —a new historical fiction novel based on the true story of the Steamship Pulaski wreck will be released and available for pre-order now. 

THE FAVORITE DAUGHTER (writing as Patti Callahan Henry—Southern Contemporary Fiction) was launched in 2019, and THE PERFECT LOVE SONG—A Christmas Holiday novella.

Patti Callahan is the co-creator and co-host of the weekly web show and podcast, Friends and Fiction featuring the five bestselling authors Mary Kay Andrews, Kristy Woodson Harvey, Kristin Harmel, and Mary Alice Monroe with endless stories, special guests, and a way to connect readers and writers
A full-time author and mother of three children, she now resides in both Mountain Brook, Alabama, and Bluffton, South Carolina with her husband.

Photo Credit: Bud Johnson Photography

© 2020 by Patti Callahan Henry


  • White Amazon Icon
  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon
  • White Twitter Icon
  • White Pinterest Icon
  • YouTube - White Circle

Website Design Development & Management by Judith D Collins