January Staff Pick: The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

Our first staff pick in an ongoing series has been graciously provided by Sue. This debut novel by M.L. Stedman was a months-long New York Times bestseller and received a starred review from Booklist.

Light Between Oceans


After serving four years on the Western Front, Tom returns a decorated military hero. He takes a position as a lighthouse keeper on an isolated island, Janus Rock. Soon after, he meets his young bride, Isabel, and brings her to accompany him. They have dreams of raising their family happily, together on the island. After years of fertility trouble and two miscarriages, a boat washes up to the shore carrying a dead man and a living baby. And this is all on page one of the book!

Sue enjoyed The Light Between Oceans for a variety of reasons. Here are her comments on what appealed to her and why you should check it out:

The writing is beautiful, and yet fast-paced enough so that you don’t want to put it down. From page one, you are hooked. This is a good old-fashioned novel: plot driven with plenty of twists, poetic descriptions, emotional conflict, and well-drawn characters. In fact, it’s impossible to read this book and not become totally drawn in by the characters. The setting is also appealing, a remote island off the coast of Western Australia on which a lone couple lives and keeps the lighthouse. But, what an emotional quandary they face! And how they unknowingly affecting the lives of others with their choices!

Sue said she highly recommends The Light Between Oceans for book club discussions due to the deep moral dilemmas faced by many of the characters.

Click the title above to find this book in the online library catalog, where you can request a copy.