After losing three children to stillbirth, a lighthouse keeper’s wife convinces her husband to keep a child that washes up in a boat on their island. But have they done the right thing? Is someone missing their child?
What appears to be the right choice is often not simple. Tom’s wife, Isabel, has been torn apart by the loss of her children, and living their isolated life on the lighthouse gives a strange sense of reality. The couple are literally in their own world.
What is so beautiful and clever about this story is the way that each character is fully delineated. What’s right and what’s wrong is not always so black and white. The people that you want to have a happy ending are not necessarily the “good guys”. The book is set in the 1920’s, and the world is still reeling from the war, with men returned unrecognisable to their homes and families, survivors who have to live with themselves and their memories. And mothers who will never see their sons returned to them.
A very touching and heartbreaking story.
Read It If: you have children or have ever thought about having them.