The Light Between Oceans is a timeless, heartbreaking and deeply-moving novel about good people who thrust themselves into a world of confusion, despair and tragedy because of their bad decisions, and who try to redeem themselves at the cost of their loved one's trust and loyalty. What bores into our minds and hearts is the uncertainty of how far they would protect each other and to what extent. This results in a novel that is both thought-provoking and suspenseful, making you want to turn the pages, demanding your full attention.
I like the unhurried pace of the story- slowly building its plot with vivid descriptions of a place and time I will never have the chance to experience. It is in those vivid descriptions that I felt swept up in the story, offering a lucid and distinct world that had my imagination running wild. The attention to detail is evident throughout the book and the author did this very well - thorough and simple, but never boring. By the first few pages, I found myself wanting more, unable to set the book aside. I found myself immersed in the story; engaged in the narrative as the author slowly unfolds the thoughts and motivations of each character. It's fascinating that the author can evoke a variety of emotions so easily from me. I held my breath while a myriad of twists and turns and surprising revelations unfold. I felt the dread and desperation the characters felt when the truth was revealed. I was afraid for them.
I found that the author developed the characters brilliantly. These are rich characters that engage you right from the beginning, and as I saw their 'moral decline', I can't help but be a quiet spectator - joining them in compassionate and sympathetic silence, as if this will help them in any way. I felt a deep connection with these characters and I was really hoping for the best, but also expecting the worst. Somehow it felt like me and the characters were in a dark room together, trying to feel our way with our outstretch hands, trying to catch any hint of light, or in this case, for any sign of redemption. I kept telling myself that these characters are good and how unfortunate it was for them to become tangled in a web of lies because of their circumstances and love for each other. The complexities and transformations each character possesses and undergoes were fascinating. The author has captured their distinct voices, individual characteristics and variety of emotions so well.
It is a great story and M.L. Stedman has told it incredibly well. She has brought together all these elements that make me consider a book to be a great one - a great story, beautiful writing, rich and interesting characters, and a thought-provoking and powerful narrative. I loved how the story affected me emotionally and how it endeared me to the characters, no matter how 'flawed' they'd become. I am not shy to admit that I cried in most parts of the book. The emotions, tragedies, regret and confusion were so real, I had to convince myself that these are not true people, living in our modern times. And that is one thing that made me like this book even more - it is timeless. It makes us think of what we would have done had we been subjected to the characters' circumstances.
The Light Between Oceans is a book to savor and immerse in. It is a compelling and touching story that makes you reflect on your own values and beliefs. While the themes in the book reflect on mistakes and regrets, the book also portrays the power of forgiveness and reminds us that people are essentially good. I loved this book and I highly recommend it.
Original review can be viewed in my blog.