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Extended Audio Sample The Light Between Oceans: A Novel Audiobook, by M. L. Stedman Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.9998372042544 out of 53.9998372042544 out of 53.9998372042544 out of 53.9998372042544 out of 53.9998372042544 out of 5 4.00 (36,856 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: M. L. Stedman Narrator: Noah Taylor Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2012 ISBN: 9781442350304
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Now at a great low price! The years-long New York Times bestseller now a major motion picture from Spielberg’s Dreamworks that is “irresistible…seductive…with a high concept plot that keeps you riveted from the first page” (O, The Oprah Magazine).

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. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An extraordinary and heartrending book about good people, tragic decisions, and the beauty found in each of them.”

    Markus Zusak, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Book Thief

  • “M. L. Stedman, a spectacularly sure storyteller, swept me to a remote island nearly a century ago, where a lighthouse keeper and his wife make a choice that shatters many lives, including their own. This is a novel in which justice for one character means another’s tragic loss, and we care desperately for both. Reading The Light between Oceans is a total-immersion experience, extraordinarily moving.”

    Monica Ali, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Irresistible…seductive…A high-concept plot that keeps you riveted from the first page.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine 

  • “M.L. Stedman’s The Light between Oceans is a beautiful novel about isolation and courage in the face of enormous loss. It gets into your heart stealthily, until you stop hoping the characters will make different choices and find you can only watch, transfixed, as every conceivable choice becomes an impossible one. I couldn’t look away from the page and then I couldn’t see it, through tears. It’s a stunning debut.”

    Maile Meloy, award-winning author

  • “This heartbreaking debut from M. L. Stedman is a gem of a book that you’ll have trouble putting down.”

    Good Housekeeping

  • “[Stedman sets] the stage beautifully to allow for a heart-wrenching moral dilemma to play out…Most impressive is the subtle yet profound maturation of Isabel and Tom as characters.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “M. L. Stedman’s vivid characters and gorgeous descriptions of the solitude of Janus Rock and of the unpredictable Australian frontier create a perfect backdrop for the tale of longing, loss, and the overwhelming love for a child that is The Light between Oceans.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review (Amazon Best Books of the Month, August 2012)

  • “Haunting…Stedman draws the reader into her emotionally complex story right from the beginning, with lush descriptions of this savage and beautiful landscape, and vivid characters with whom we can readily empathize. Hers is a stunning and memorable debut.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “This fine, suspenseful debut explores desperation, morality, and loss, and considers the damaging ways in which we store our private sorrows, and the consequences of such terrible secrets.”

    Martha Stewart Whole Living

  • “Moral dilemmas don’t come more exquisite than the one around which Australian novelist Stedman constructs her debut.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • A Barnes & Noble Recommends Selection
  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month, August 2012
  • A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • A Los Angeles Times Bestseller
  • An NPR Bestseller
  • A San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Selected for the August 2012 Indie Next List
  • A Barnes & Noble Best Book of 2012
  • Kirkus Reviews Top 25 Book, August 2012
  • A BookPage Best Book of 2012
  • A Pop Sugar Pick for 9 Audiobooks to Listen to on Your Next Long Road Trip
  • A 2013 Women's Prize for Fiction Nominee
  • Winner of the 2012 GoodReads Readers’ Choice for Historical Ficiton

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 | 11/18/2016

    " Disappointing ending. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Krista Malmberg | 2/20/2014

    " An easy read with a great moral dilemma and food for thought...I read for 4 hours straight until I reached the conclusion! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Caroline | 2/15/2014

    " I liked this book a lot, not quite 4 stars but more than 3 stars. I have to admit the ending surprised me. I am glad I read it but it won't go down in my personal library history as a "must read". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mahlor | 2/4/2014

    " Turn of the century melodrama. Way more about the rearing of babies than I expected. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Hannah.kaufmangmail.com | 1/29/2014

    " This debut novel is well-paced and satisfying. Set in a lighthouse in Western Australia just after World War I, Tom and Isabel Sherbourne discover a baby in a shipwreck that washes up on Janus Rock where Tom is the lighthouse keeper. The drama begins when Tom and Isabel decide to keep the baby and they are forced to live with the consequences. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jane Pen | 1/21/2014

    " Thought provoking, harrowing; beautifully written account of a moral quandary where your loyalties and pulled all over the place. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessica | 1/18/2014

    " An extremely tragic tale of the devastating consequences even actions of love can have, and all the shades of gray that exist in any moral / ethical debate. This novel is definitely worthy of all the praise it's been getting. I'll be thinking about this one for quite some time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heidi Thomey daryabary | 1/3/2014

    " I enjoyed this book a lot. The author's way with words, just read the first paragraph and see what I'm talking about. Great story, heartwrenching, hope to never be in that positiion! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda Rooney | 12/23/2013

    " I loved this book for its emotion and it's conflict set in a beautiful place of beauty and isolation in Australia. It made me challenge what's right and wrong and made me think about a mothers love of a child. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Miriam | 12/17/2013

    " A wonderful story about loss and forgiveness. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ro | 11/29/2013

    " The story was sad but entertaining to read. I felt sorry for each character for a different reason. I understood why each person made the choices they did....always out of love for someone. It was a worthy read, but not an overall page turner. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Robin | 8/10/2013

    " The Light Between Oceans was a very interesting and heartwrenching novel. I liked the outcome of the book which provided some closure for the characters and the reader. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan Okeefe | 7/2/2013

    " What a lovely read in all its tragic events between two young families...nicely written and good character development! Really enjoyed it "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patrick T | 5/20/2013

    " Very complex ! Made me happy made me sad then it actually made me mad ! I was thrilled how the Author ended the story ! I really wish there more pages I couldn't put it down "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kerri Cotter | 5/12/2013

    " This book grabbed me right from the start. As a daughter of a lighthouse keeper it really spoke to me. I also loved the twists and turns in the storyline and thought the characters were so well-rounded. Absolutely recommend. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Melissa | 4/11/2013

    " Good book, definately worth reading. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rachel Binting | 3/29/2013

    " Great read. Once the story took off, I couldn't put it down... very intriguing story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Julie | 3/5/2013

    " Great book! It was thought provoking and very interesting to read about a different part of the world and very different time. I'd definitely seek out this author again. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rose | 2/12/2013

    " Loved the book & writing even tho was uncomfortable & knew the outcome couldn't be happy. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mary Roucka | 1/31/2013

    " I loved the characters in this book. What made it so compelling was you could kind of see everyone's side, and you felt such compassion for the turmoil everyone was going through. A great plot. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Robin Daniels | 1/3/2013

    " Beautiful book; rich characters, engaging narrative, engrossing tale. Could not put it down; the story pulled me in and would not let go. I highly recommend it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wendy Siegel | 12/5/2012

    " Slow start, but excellent story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melanie Mcdaniel | 10/10/2012

    " What a story! So well told & gut wrenching in so many ways. Left me with a smile through tears. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gina Kazmerski | 9/16/2012

    " This is one of those books that crawls into your soul. Very well written-- you feel the emotions in every character. I loved this story! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Renee Aikens | 7/31/2012

    " Very poignant read that beautifully depicts the tension between right and wrong decisions when emotional loss complicates the equation. "

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About the Author

M. L. Stedman was born and raised in Western Australia and now lives in London. Her debut novel, The Light between Oceans, was met with high critical acclaim.

About the Narrator

Noah Taylor is an English-born Australian actor known for his roles in Shine, Almost Famous, Laura Croft: Tomb Raider, Vanilla Sky and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He currently lives in Brighton, England, with his wife, Dionne Harris.