THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS: A NOVEL ~M.L.STEDMAN
THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS is a delicate, beautifully written love story and very difficult to imagine that it is M.L. Stedman’s debut novel. This story is a fine tuned piece of literature. It has been on the New York Times Best Seller list for an extended period of time and is one of the big books on Oprah’s book club schedule.
I am sharing this book from a recent book group discussion, because our group just enjoyed this book from start to finish even though there was a great deal of sadness in the telling of the tale. The premise of the story is unusual and after reaching the last page the book lingers with one for a number of days and comes back to mind often. All 12 participants thought the book a marvelous read, even with all the different thoughts about it; there was really no correct answer to the dilemma.
The author “poses an impossible dilemma and makes us question the judgments of all involved.” Lianne Koliren: Daily Express (UK)
The location of the story is significant and it takes place out on a rocky island which has a light house and a keeper who are stationed there for a year at a time. The light is in an area of heavy currents between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific and is 100 miles from the point of land that is home base. The men are coming home from France and the war, attempting to adjust to their lives and find work. There are rough passages to navigate all round.
The member of our group who chose this book had journeyed to Tasmania and while there had visited a lighthouse and saw a tiny grave for a baby on the bluff beside the light. She was curious. She set her search on finding a book or story about just such an experience listing Australia, baby, and lighthouse as her search words and that is how she found this story for us to read.
As one begins reading and then is taken through the back stories of the characters, it is amazing how fragile this group is and how they found each other. They all had such hopes and yet had to proceed in new directions; maybe one could say they needed to recover from their individual hopes in order to find themselves – live forward.
How can we right the wrongs of father’s sins and mother’s silence? How can we protect those we love and make amends for those who were lost in war? What is the right choice or the moral choice? How does the context of a life change its progression? We are all searching for love, are we able to find it?
The writing is not frenzied or hurried, it is a waltz surrounded in our own arms and thoughts. The brassy, glass housing lights the beyond and not the below, it is for others and not for the self no matter the storm or wind.
This is a book from my own collection because I have just read three other books for review and I do not wish to tell you about any of them. THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS is a good read and I agree that it is worthwhile literature.