Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Breath Of Fresh Australian Air

I was NOT expecting to like this book.  It's not that I was expecting to DISLIKE this book, just that  I was expecting a slightly better than average book.  And I'm still not 100% sure why I loved this book as much as I did (there isn't anything specific that would generally draw me?) but I think it's because I never could quite tell what was going to happen.  Tom and Isabel are the only inhabitants of an island that is the home to a lighthouse off the coast of Australia.  They have had many heartbreaking problems having a baby of their own so they are shocked (for more than one reason) when a lifeboat washes up on their shores carrying a dead man and a small, very much alive, baby.  Isabel convinces Tom that the baby must be an orphan and instead of reporting the incident, they should simply give the baby a loving home.  Tom reluctantly agrees.  This choice has very serious repercussions that ultimately threaten everything that they've built together.

The moral dilemmas are plentiful and the ability to see both sides of the argument makes for a compelling story.  With even as few as 20 pages left, I could see multiple different outcomes and wasn't sure which one I was rooting for.  I think the fact that my feelings for each character were never cut and dry made this book really interesting to me.  I enjoy multidimensional characters and feeling like things are more gray than black and white.

This would be a great book for a book discussion and I'll recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical fiction and a unique setting.  I loved this book.

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