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The Light Between Oceans, M.L. Stedman's debut novel, explores the gray area of human morality against the backdrop of life in an isolated lighthouse. Ready to leave his years on the Western front of the Great War behind him, Tom Sherbourne returns to his native Australia and takes a post as lighthouse keeper at Janus Rock. He surprises himself by falling in love with pretty, spirited Isabel, whom he marries and takes to live in the lighthouse. Eager for children, Isabel is heartbroken when she repeatedly miscarries--until a boat bearing a baby girl and a dead man washes ashore at the island. Torn between duty and his wife's happiness, Tom agrees not to report the boat and to allow Isabel to pass the baby off as their own. After all, Isabel argues, the child is almost certainly an orphan.
When the couple returns to the mainland with "daughter" Lucy in tow, they learn that her real mother is alive. Tom must choose between preserving his family and following his conscience. Isabel is torn between Tom and the child, the two loves of her life. Their choices will forever change the fate of the innocent toddler caught in their well-intentioned lie.
Stedman examines the contrast between the moral compasses of individuals and society. The elegant plot explores how many rights can make a wrong and how our choices define who we are. This account of an honorable man's disastrous brush with deceit is sure to both captivate readers and haunt them.
***This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness Readers Edition. Sign up for this free and awesome newsletter at http://www.shelf-awareness.com for the latest news and reviews! This review refers to an ARC provided by Shelf Awareness.***