ebookclassics

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman (2012)

light-between-oceans-book-coverA few quick thoughts on The Light Between Oceans:

*CONTAINS SPOILERS

The Light Between Oceans centers on Tom and Isabel, a young married couple  who are living in isolation on an island in Australia following World War I. Their lives are fairly mundane until a boat washes up on the shore containing a dead man and a baby.

BOOK CONFUSION

allthelight

Am I right?

Before I read the book, I always confused it with All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. As you will see, they have very similar covers (okay, they’re both blue) and both books were receiving a lot of attention around the same time. So when I was invited to read TLBO, I actually thought I was reading the other book!

INITIAL CONFUSION

I didn’t discover until I read TLBO that not only was this M.L. Stedman’s debut novel, but M.L. was a woman! I don’t know why I had the impression the book was written by a man. But then I began to wonder why the author was hiding her name and wondered if this was a case of a female writer not wanting their work to be judged because of their gender. However, after reading some of M.L. Stedman’s interviews where she has a lawyer present and chooses very carefully what to answer, I think the author is just trying to protect her privacy.

ISLAND LIFE

What I loved about the story is how the author transports you to the island and describes what it’s like to live in such isolated and idyllic beauty, a place I think I would personally enjoy. The lighthouse and its surroundings are practically an additional character, as readers intimately get to know the island from top to bottom.

THIS IS WHERE MY MOVIE/CELEBRITY OBSESSION COMES IN

Ugh! Too darn cute.

Ugh! Too darn cute.

The movie adaptation starring Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander comes out this weekend and I’m looking forward to comparing the movie to the book. I’m also very interested because Michael and Alicia began dating during filming and I want to see if their chemistry lights up the screen and brings a little something extra to the movie.

A FINE BALANCE

An elegantly balanced novel is how I would describe The Light Between Oceans, as it driven both by plot and the characters who find themselves tangled up in an impossible situation. I couldn’t help becoming immersed in the story and putting myself in the shoes of the characters, thinking about what I would do, the choices I would make. I agonized over it and truly felt heartbroken for Tom and Isabel. The moral dilemma they face is all the more tragic because there is NO good answer, all choices lead to tragedy and that’s what makes this book so brilliant.

5 Stars

Thanks again to Simon and Schuster Canada for inviting me to join the Goodreads read-along.

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12 comments on “The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman (2012)

  1. Naomi
    September 30, 2016

    This book made me sob. I’m afraid to see the movie. I think I’ll wait and see what you have to say about it. (i.e. How many tears?)

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 1, 2016

      I didn’t cry when I read the book, but I did agonize over the situation for everyone including the child and Isabel’s parents. But maybe it will be different when I see the movie. I’ve cried over commercials, so …

      Liked by 2 people

  2. TJ @ MyBookStrings
    September 30, 2016

    Yay, I’m so glad that you liked the book. I loved it, too. I think part of what makes it so perfect is the fact that there are no good answers at the end. My book club went to see the movie last week, and all agreed that tissues are needed. Overall, they liked the movie, too, and thought it was well adapted. Makes me even more upset that I was unable to go with them!

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 1, 2016

      Oh, I would be so upset too. I really want to see the movie because I think the actors will make the book come to life. Even if I have to go and sit in the movie theatre by myself! Apparently Michael Fassbender really loved the book and the character Tom.

      Like

  3. Jenni Elyse (@jenni_elyse)
    October 2, 2016

    I’m glad you liked the book. I’ve thought about reading it and I really want to see the movie. I love both Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 9, 2016

      The book’s summary really didn’t me give the impression it was a must-read or a page turner. But I was completely sucked in by the story and found it very enjoyable.

      Like

  4. DoingDewey
    October 4, 2016

    You’re so right about the bookish confusion! I’ve not read this yet and I did read All the Light We Cannot See, so I keep being disappointed that it’s this one that’s being made into a movie.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 9, 2016

      The rights to All the Light We Cannot See have been optioned by 20th Century Fox, but I haven’t heard anything since then so they must be trying to figure out the production or money.

      Like

  5. buriedinprint
    October 13, 2016

    I quite liked this one and I’m very curious about the film; I can imagine that the cinematography would be gorgeous!

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 15, 2016

      I agree that I’m sure it’s gorgeous to watch too, although I haven’t heard any buzz since the movie came out. I wonder if it’s quietly disappeared.

      Like

  6. CineMuseFilms
    November 10, 2016

    I have not read the book but I can see why many viewers have reservations about this movie. But for me, in cinematic terms, this is an epic film; visually beautiful and morally tense. Sure, its also melodramatic, but thats the period genre for you.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      November 10, 2016

      Ooh, I like the way you describe it. The movie seems to have disappeared, so I guess not that many people were interested in seeing it, but it’s still a priority for me. The book was very well-written and an enjoyable read.

      Like

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This entry was posted on September 29, 2016 by in Reviews and tagged , , , .

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