I read this book on the
advice of someone who had read it and loved it. I was not
disappointed. While the main character, Tom Sherbourne, joins
together, not only the other characters but also events stretching
from WWI through to the 1950s, it is the lighthouse that has the
The description of the lighthouse, off the south-west coast of Australia, and the area
around it, is beautiful, and it permeates the entire book. There is a
delicate balance between poetic descriptions of natural features,
both on the island and on the mainland, and the suspenseful telling
of the story.
Without going into too much detail, the discovery, by
Tom, the lighthouse keeper, and his young wife, Isabel, of a dead man
and a baby washed up in a small boat initiate an overwhelming
sequence of events. Right and wrong become blurred at the edges and
decisions made, for whatever reason, draw heavy lines across the
lives of all those involved. In fact, like the horror of Tom's
experiences in WWI, these choices and experiences embed themselves in
each and everyone of the people affected, stretching across decades.
A book well worth reading.
(The photo of M.L.Stedman is from www.elle.it)
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