The Light Between Oceans is a multi-layered, tragic story of a lighthouse keeper, his wife and the course of action they took upon discovering a 2-month old baby and a dead man in a rowboat which had washed up on the shore of the island where they lived. Tom and Isabel are decent people; he is a World War I veteran who served honorably and she is a local girl who is young and unworldly. They are very content with their isolated life on Janus Rock except that they are unable to have a child. This baby appears to be the chance they have been waiting for. They rationalize keeping the child as their own, unaware of the terrible consequences for the parent(s) who have lost their child.
The story is set in Australia immediately following World War I. The descriptions of the area, the people, and their lives are beautifully drawn. Stedman skillfully weaves a compelling tale which causes us to ponder the moral and ethical questions and each character’s position. Tom and Isabel, Hannah and her husband, the baby’s grandparents, and the townspeople each seem so real. The author’s use of language draws the reader into the story, making it come alive.
The Lev Eisha Book Club unanimously recommends The Light Between Oceans. It is a story with no easy or pat answers about what to do in difficult situations. As readers, we cared about each character and felt emotionally connected to them. We hope you will enjoy this read.
Submitted by Barbara Brown