Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Light Between Oceans

This is the story of a young man, Tom Sherbourne,  who takes a post as a lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, a small isolated island off the western coast of Australia in the 1920s.  A WWI veteran, he has seen the horrors of war and the remote location and solitary work appeals to him,  and heals him. When he meets Isabel on the mainland before sailing for Janus Rock, he soon marries her and brings her  to the island, where they begin a happy and loving life together, isolated from the rest of the world.  Anxious to start their  family on the island,  Isabel becomes increasingly desperate after suffering multiple miscarriages. When a small boat drifts onto their rocky shore with a dead man and an alive infant in the boat, you can guess what happens. This is another novel about the decisions people make, and what they will do for those they love.

This book had been recommended to me by several people at the library, but as so often happens when people rave about a book, it didn't quite live up to the hype for me. I enjoyed it, but I didn't love it. It's kind of slow moving, and you know it's going to have a sad ending. But for me it was worth reading just for the descriptions of the island and of Tom's life as a lightkeeper. What an interesting and lovely life! Why don't we still have lightkeepers? I loved reading about how the light worked and Tom's meticulous record keeping of everything that happened on the island, and his careful work maintaining the light.  You really feel like you are there on the island and near the water,  and know the way around the paths and up the stairs to the light. Their isolated life on this remote little island appealed to me so much. But unfortunately another world existed outside of their island, and it's when that reality comes back into their life that their happiness is threatened, and the consequences of their decisions become known.

No comments:

Post a Comment