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The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman
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The Light Between Oceans (original 2012; edition 2012)

by ML Stedman

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,5742352,328 (4)1 / 239
Member:mrssweetiebear
Title:The Light Between Oceans
Authors:ML Stedman
Info:Scribner (2012), Kindle Edition, 369 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:read 2012

Work details

The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman (2012)

  1. 31
    Silas Marner by George Eliot (aliklein)
  2. 10
    Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio (dara85)
    dara85: This takes place in the past (1930's), a child is taken and goes to live with another family, involves a crime
  3. 00
    The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (dara85)
  4. 00
    Moloka'i by Alan Brennert (akblanchard)
    akblanchard: Both books have exotic, isolated settings and characters who experience great love as well as great loss.
  5. 44
    The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (aliklein)
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English (242)  Dutch (1)  All languages (243)
Showing 1-5 of 242 (next | show all)
Great story I was reluctant to read because I was afraid of a sad ending. The ending is somber but yet so hopeful. It's a wonderful book and looks at loss from the perspective of 2 different families and how, in the end, both found peace in the world. ( )
  bogopea | Dec 6, 2014 |
This is not one of my favorites, although it does raise some interesting ethical questions. My experience with this book goes as follows: Intrigued, bored, confused, curious, pissed at the characters, relieved, and I ended wishing I hadn't kept going.

Yes, I did get emotionally invested in the characters, and I'm not sure what I would have done, but by the end of this book, I was convinced that none of the characters had any sense!

Also, the random shifts in tense confused me. There are random sections where the author shifts from past tense to present tense and there is no reason whatsoever. ( )
4 vote LadyLiz | Nov 25, 2014 |
Review to follow ( )
  Jemima_Pett | Nov 11, 2014 |
this book was better read as a fable than as a realistic story - once i suspended disbelief, i was able to enjoy the storyline - it was engrossing -a lighthouse keeper and his wife in western australia found a baby in a boat on their island - they kept the baby without letting anyone know and in doing so caused irreversible damage to themselves, the baby and so many others -

i loved the sweetness of the relationship between the husband and wife and their love for the baby and was intrigued by the plotline - again, though, as there were so many unrealistic aspects to the book, i couldn't rate it higher - this was a first book by a new author and i look forward to her next work - ( )
  njinthesun | Oct 30, 2014 |
This is a book which will stay with you long after you've read the last page. The characters are beautifully formed and all are likable, which makes the dilemma they face so utterly heartbreaking. You quickly come to understand that there is no way for the central problem in the plot to be resolved without one or many of these characters suffering and you suffer with them. The fact that this is the work of a first time author also impressed me mightily. This is an exceptionally well-crafted story that you will remember and recommend to your friends. ( )
  LaineyMac | Oct 19, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 242 (next | show all)
Light" is a story you want to finish, despite some predictability problems. I cared about Tom and Isabel, and cheered for them even as they betrayed each other. And I was charmed by the supporting cast of characters (Bluey and Ralph in particular).

Stedman's grasp of the dialect of the region's inhabitants and dialogue fitting for the era are admirable. Her writing is sound, if sometimes uninspiring, but every so often she throws out a gorgeous line that you have to stop and read twice to appreciate, like this one: "A goblin thought jumps onto her shoulder: what's the point of tomorrow?" Or, "The rain is falling more heavily, and in the distance, thunder grumbles at being left behind by the lightning." Nice.

First-time novelist Stedman did what all good writers should do: She got her readers emotionally invested in her story.

As if you needed it, here's more proof that this novel is worth your time: The film rights have already been picked up.

 
The miraculous arrival of a child in the life of a barren couple delivers profound love but also the seeds of destruction.......A polished, cleverly constructed and very precisely calculated first novel
 
As time passes, the harder the decision becomes to undo and the more towering is its impact. This is the story of its terrible consequences.

But it is also a description of the extraordinary, sustaining power of a marriage to bind two people together in love, through the most emotionally harrowing circumstances.

 
Light Between Oceans' is tough to shake off....And to the author's credit, Light's resolution is neither sensationalistic nor overly tidy. Everyone in this book has to make tough choices, including the little girl. By letting neither her readers nor her characters off the hook easily, Stedman creates a bond that makes her book tough to shake off.

 
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In memory of my parents
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On the day of the miracle, Isabel was kneeling at the cliff's edge, tending the small, newly made driftwood cross.
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There are still more days to travel in this life. And he knows that the man who makes the journey has been shaped by every day and every person along the way.
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Book description
After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season and shore leaves are granted every other year at best, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.

Tom, whose records as a lighthouse keeper are meticulous and whose moral principles have withstood a horrific war, wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel has taken the tiny baby to her breast. Against Tom’s judgment, they claim her as their own and name her Lucy. When she is two, Tom and Isabel return to the mainland and are reminded that there are other people in the world. Their choice has devastated one of them.

M. L. Stedman’s mesmerizing, beautifully written novel seduces us into accommodating Isabel’s decision to keep this “gift from God.” And we are swept into a story about extraordinarily compelling characters seeking to find their North Star in a world where there is no right answer, where justice for one person is another’s tragic loss.

The Light Between Oceans is exquisite and unforgettable, a deeply moving novel.

1926. Tom Sherbourne is a young lighthouse keeper on a remote island off Western Australia. The only inhabitants of Janus Rock, he and his wife, Isabel, live a quiet life, cocooned from the rest of the world.
The one April morning a boat washes ashore carrying a dead man and a crying infant - and the path of the couple's lives hits an unthinkable crossroads.
Only years later do they discover the devastating consequences of the decision they made that day - as the baby's real story unfolds...
M.L.STEDMAN'S debut is the mesmerising novel of loyalty, love and unbearable choices.
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"A novel set on a remote Australian island, where a childless couple live quietly running a lighthouse, until a boat carrying a baby washes ashore"--

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