Author(s): M. L. Stedman
This mesmerizing Australian novel has been a bestselling book around the world, and Hollywood movie rights were recently snapped up by Dreamworks, with David Heyman (Harry Potter) set to produce. It is the winner of three prestigious ABIA awards, including their 'Book of the Year', and also won the Indie Awards' 'Book of the Year'.
They break the rules and follow their hearts. What happens next will break yours.
1926. Tom Sherbourne is a young lighthouse keeper on a remote island off Western Australia. The only inhabitants of Janus Rock, he and his wife Isabel live a quiet life, cocooned from the rest of the world.
Then one April morning a boat washes ashore carrying a dead man and a crying infant - and the path of the couple's lives hits an unthinkable crossroads.
Only years later do they discover the devastating consequences of the decision they made that day - as the baby's real story unfolds ...
Winner of three ABIA awards for Best Newcomer, Best Literary Novel and Book of the Year
Winner of two Indie Awards for Best Debut and Book of the Year
Winner of the Nielsen BookData Bookseller's Choice Award for 2013
Recently voted Historical Novel of 2012 by GoodReads' reading community
~ This is a debut novel by a very talented Australian author, who weaves a magical and heartbreaking tale that makes you question what would appear on the surface as a black and white situation - a simple moral decision between right and wrong. This novel deals with the grey area. Tom is a lighthouse keeper haunted by his memories of the war and his absent mother. He has escaped society to live in peaceful solitude at Janus Rock off the coast of Western Australia in the 1920s. Whilst on the mainland in Partageuse, he encounters the bubbly, beautiful character of Isabel and she moves out to the island with him as his wife. Together, their horizon is rose-coloured and full of hope and love. But Mabel suffers three miscarriages and despair consumes her, so when a dinghy washes up on the shore containing a dead man and a crying infant, she accepts this little girl as a gift from God. For Mabel's sake, Tom uneasily agrees to allow her a day before notifying the authorities and recording the event in his logbook. A day turns into two, which turns into a week, which turns into years. Mabel appears for the most part unconcerned but this secret is eating away at their relationship, and at Tom's soul. They both adore Lucy, and M L Stedman captures the little girl's speech and childlike character so perfectly that I couldn't help but fall in love with her too! Meanwhile, a lonely woman in Partageuse goes each day to the authorities for any news of her lost husband and child. The plot thickens, as you can imagine, with this poor little girl trapped in the middle of two desperate mothers and a situation that one can not possibly have the heart to judge. An astounding read. Jemma
M. L. Stedman was born and raised in Western Australia, and now lives in London. The Light Between Oceans, her first novel, is an international bestseller, having spent well over a year on the New York Times Bestsellers list. As well as being translated into almost forty languages, the book was nominated for the Miles Franklin Award, the Women's Prize for Literature (the Orange/Bailey's Prize), and the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction to name a few, and won prizes including Best Literary Fiction, Best Newcomer and Book of the Year at the Australian Book Industry Awards, and Australian Indie Awards for Best Debut Novel and Book of the Year. Director Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine, The Place Beyond The Pines) is adapting the story for film, in association with producer David Heyman (Gravity, Harry Potter) and Steven Spielberg's DreamWorks Studios.