In The Light Keeper, author Cole Moreton introduces us to Sarah, who wants nothing more in life than to have a baby. Over the years she has become increasingly desperate to fulfil this wish, and increasingly sad when it hasn’t happened. Sarah is standing on a cliff near Beachy Head, feeling alone and trying to decide what to do.
Jack is an American musician, eccentric and now frantic as he searches for his wife after discovering Sarah had left their marital home. He believes Sarah has come to this area for one reason and he is determined to find her before she makes her decision. Gabriel, known to locals as The Keeper, lives in the old lighthouse nearby. He too is alone, but he tells himself that’s the way he wants it. A local group of volunteers, known as The Guardians, patrol the cliffs; they try to show the souls they meet that there’s always another way.
When I find a book I enjoy I usually race through it, turning pages as fast as my fingers (or device) will allow. But very rarely I come across one which is so mesmerising, so beautiful, that I savour it slowly, reading but a few pages at a time as I don’t want the experience to be over. Cole Moreton’s writing had such a profound effect on me that I’m struggling to convey with mere letters and punctuation just how moving it was.
I could almost hear the cries of the gulls and the sighing of the sea as I read. I felt the isolation and pain of the characters, especially The Keeper, as he struggles to heal his heart. There are trigger warnings for this novel of suicide and grief but it is in no way a bleak experience: it was a revelation; a journey; a spiritual song for my soul.
Before reading The Light Keeper, I had planned to swap it with another bookworm via my Bookpo.st account, but having finished it I know there’s absolutely no way I can part with it. I hope you give The Light Keeper the chance to sweep you off your feet too. The best book I’ve read in years, this is a definite 5 star read for me.