Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Review: The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman
Tom Sherborne and his wife Isabel live in seclusion for most of the year, they live as lighthouse keepers on a tiny island in western Australian. Once a season they travel by boat to see Isabel’s family, Tom had no contact with his family. Isabel has yearned to be a mother, but she’s suffered multiple miscarriages and a stillborn son. When a boat turns up on shore with a deceased man and a crying baby, Isabel asks her husband to wait before reporting the boat. Once Isabel has the child in her arms, she believes the baby girl is a gift from God. Isabel convinces her husband to keep the child, bury the man and send the boat back out in the ocean. No one would find out, and Isabel believes the mother may have fallen into the ocean. She couldn’t possible give this baby back. Tom agrees, but his conscience won’t let him forget. This child may have a family and mother looking for her.
The Light Between the Oceans is a debut novel that will keep readers thinking. In Isabel’s defense she truly believed that the child had no mother, she didn’t want to send the child to an orphanage. However, readers will be forced to ponder if that really was her decision to make? Tom is constantly worried and feeling guilty for what they did. Passing the child off as their own is very easy since Isabel miscarried two weeks before. As time passes, and they settled into life as a happy family, the truth is uncovered. Tom went against his better judgment and he can’t ignore the reality of the situation, they stole an innocent baby. There is no right way to handle this situation, their actions have great consequences. Stedman has created a wonderful story line, one that is believable, emotional and heartbreaking. Tom and Isabel’s comfortable life is about to be shattered, but little Lucy is confused most of all.