Review published on June 21, 2017.
Elizabeth’s eyes have failed. She can no longer read the books she loves or see the paintings that move her spirit, but her mind remains sharp and music fills the vacancy left by her blindness. When her father’s journals are discovered on a shipwrecked boat, she enlist the help of a delinquent teen, Morgan, to read them to her. An unlikely relationship develops between the two women as Elizabeth is carried back to her childhood home – the lighthouse on Porphyry Island, Lake Superior – and to the memory of her twin sister Emily. The faded pages of her father’s journals reveal more secrets than she anticipates.
I loved this book. It is real storytelling which has you spellbound as the family secrets are revealed. What a pleasant change from the psychological thrillers that have flooded the market recently. The author has been very clever weaving all of the threads of the story together and leaving the reader eager for more revelations.
The book alternates between the voices of Elizabeth and Morgan as their two stories come together. The only criticism I have is that there are a lot of unlikely coincidences, but if you can overlook these and take the story on face value, then you will be rewarded with a brilliant read.
The book is very moving in places and portrays a family with skeletons in the cupboard which change the lives of various of its members. I loved the characters, particularly Morgan, who is battling with her own demons but finds an ally in Elizabeth even though there is a vast age gap.
The book had me enthralled from start to finish. I can’t recommend it highly enough and wish the author every success. It is good basic storytelling which, sadly, is rare these days. Would also recommend this book as an ideal book club read.
Dorothy Flaxman 5/5
The Lightkeeper’s Daughters by Jean E. Pendziwol
Harper 9780062572028 hbk Jul 2017