2015 Book #57 – The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman

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Title: The Light Between Oceans
Author: M. L. Stedman
Date finished: 6/14/15
Genre: Historical fiction
Publisher: Scribner
Publication Date: July 31, 2012
Pages in book: 343
Stand alone or series: Stand alone

Blurb from the cover:

After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.
Tom, who keeps meticulous records and whose moral principles have withstood a horrific war, wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel insists the baby is a “gift from God,” and against Tom’s judgment, they claim her as their own and name her Lucy. When she is two, Tom and Isabel return to the mainland and are reminded that there are other people in the world. Their choice has devastated one of them.

My rating: 4.5 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I read this book for the Terryville Library’s Fiction Lover’s Book Discussion group. I have been thinking about joining the group for awhile but even though it is only one night a month, I always find it hard trying to add one more thing into my schedule. I realized a couple months ago though that I have such a passion for reading and that I get such joy out of discussing good books with other people that I really should be making this group more of a priority. I had planned to start going with the May meeting (the book was one of the Liane Moriarty books and she’s been on my to read list for awhile) but we were on vacation when they were meeting in May so I decided to wait for the June meeting. And when I saw what the book for the June meeting was, I was excited since this book is on my to read list as well. And thank goodness I was able to finish the book since the meeting is tomorrow! (I’m writing this on Sunday 6/14 and waiting to post it until after the meeting tomorrow so I don’t give away my thoughts!)
I was hooked on this story from the very beginning. And though it was a tiny bit slow to start up in the beginning, the last half of the book just flew by for me, I couldn’t put it down. I could barely convince myself to look away from the pages long enough to eat my dinner. The characters of the story will completely draw you in and you’ll feel as if you’re there living on Janus with the Sherbournes and you’ll be a witness to everything that happens through the story. The emotions that are woven into the story will take your breath away. When you’ve raised a baby its whole life, even if that baby isn’t biologically yours, is it right to have that baby taken away? What is really right and wrong in a situation like that? What is fair? The contents of this book and the questions it brings up in the reader’s mind are just so thought provoking. What would you do if you were in this exact situation? Though for much of the book I was mad at Isabella for some of the choices she made, once she fell in love with that baby, I can’t say that I can know whether I would have done anything differently.
For those of you who would like to have your own book discussion with this book, here is a site with some reading discussion questions you can use.

The bottom line: I loved this book so so much. It was amazingly touching and moving and just so great. Everyone should read this as soon as possible, be ready though it’s going to tug hard at your heart strings.

Favorite quotes:

“He struggles to make sense of it- all this love, so bent out of shape, refracted, like light through the lens.”

“You only have to forgive once. To resent, you have to do it all day, every day. You have to keep remembering all the bad things.”

“I’ve learned the hard way that to have any kind of a future you’ve got to give up hope of ever changing your past”

Link to author website
Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

2015 Book #29 – You’re So Fine by Kieran Kramer

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Title: You’re So Fine
Author: Kieran Kramer
Date finished: 4/8/15
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Publication Date: December 30, 2014
Pages in book: 395
Stand alone or series: Stand alone

Blurb from the cover:

CAN THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME…
Lacey Clark’s dreams of Hollywood stardom didn’t turn out quite the way she planned. Instead, her life is more of the daytime-drama variety: One of her actor ex-boyfriends fathered a child with another woman, and now, long story short, Lacey is the adopted single mother of his son. She takes little Henry with her to South Carolina to escape the film business but winds up working at a small movie studio, determined to do a good job both on set and at “home.” Only problem is she ends up sharing a house with movie star Beau Wilder, who is no role model for Henry—and only spells trouble for Lacey…
LEAD TO A HAPPY ENDING?Beau is arguably the most gorgeous man on the planet—and a known ladies’ man. His wealthy Lowcountry pedigree is rivaled only by his bad-boy charm, a combination that proves irresistible for Lacey. And he adores Henry! If they weren’t both on a movie set, their lives would seem too good to be true…unless the chemistry—not to mention the burning attraction—between them is real, and Hollywood’s golden boy is actually falling for this sassy single mom? When it comes to love, sometimes you just have to throw out the script…

My rating: 3.25 stars out of a scale of 5
My review: This book will count for the challenge I am participating in for April, the #ReadingMyLibrary reading challenge. I saw this book at the Bristol Library and I had added it to my TBR list in January (this book was one of my featured “Friday Finds” on Jan 23. At first I found it difficult to really get into the story of this book. I ended up liking it overall but there were a lot of things that I wasn’t a huge fan of. Some of the scenes were hard to follow along with and honestly some of them I thought didn’t really fit. The flow was a little off with some of the book and it made it hard to fully connect with the characters I think. Also, I thought it was a little wordy, it was a pretty long book.
There were also a lot of things about this story that I liked, Henry was a total sweetheart and I found it really touching how amazingly devoted Lacey was to him even though she wasn’t his birth mother. I wasn’t really feeling Beau’s character at the beginning (he was honestly kind of an ass) but by the end I was more fond of him.

The bottom line: Story was ok, not sure I would necessarily recommend but I wouldn’t discourage anyone from reading it either.

Link to author website
Link to Amazon