The Lighthouse Road: A Novel

( 7 )

Overview


Against the wilds of sea and wood, a young immigrant woman settles into life outside Duluth in the 1890s, still shocked at finding herself alone in a new country, abandoned and adrift; in the early 1920s, her orphan son, now grown, falls in love with the one woman he shouldn’t and uses his best skills to build them their own small ark to escape. But their pasts travel with them, threatening to capsize even their fragile hope. In this triumphant new novel, Peter Geye has crafted another deeply moving tale of a ...
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The Lighthouse Road

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Overview


Against the wilds of sea and wood, a young immigrant woman settles into life outside Duluth in the 1890s, still shocked at finding herself alone in a new country, abandoned and adrift; in the early 1920s, her orphan son, now grown, falls in love with the one woman he shouldn’t and uses his best skills to build them their own small ark to escape. But their pasts travel with them, threatening to capsize even their fragile hope. In this triumphant new novel, Peter Geye has crafted another deeply moving tale of a misbegotten family shaped by the rough landscape in which they live--often at the mercy of wildlife and weather--and by the rough edges of their own breaking hearts.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The Lighthouse Road is a cinematic thundercloud gusting across the northern landscape Peter Geye so clearly loves. With its conflicted heroes and their seafaring, bootlegging, lumber-camp agonies, this book understands hard work and heartbreak--it takes no shortcuts but delivers its cargo in generous style, a tale wrapped in blizzards and viewed through the glass eye of history."
— Leif Enger

"To be submerged in the frothing, watery world of Peter Geye’s The Lighthouse Road is to be baptized anew in the promise of American letters. I defy you to bear witness to the tormented tenderness of Odd Eide, to suffer and love and row beside him in his skiff, without throwing down your nets. Here is an epic that spans more than generations. Here is an epic that spans the topography between hell-dark bear dens and moonlit lake water. Here is a novel that charts the whole of the human heart."
— Bruce Machart, author of The Wake of Forgiveness

"No author today writes from a sense of place as brilliantly as Peter Geye. The Lighthouse Road takes place in a broodingly atmospheric Northern Minnesota, peopled by tragic characters so influenced by their unforgiving environment, they can’t recognize love when they see it. This is a story that lingers long after you turn the last page."
— Melanie Benjamin, author of Alice I Have Been

"The Lighthouse Road is a small marvel of a book. Geye's expert rendering of a time long past--the brutality of backwoods logging camps, the heartbreak of an era when immigration meant never going home again, the logistics of whiskey-running--is matched by the complexity and depth of his characters. A beautifully written, elegantly constructed novel."
— Emily St John Mandel

"Peter Geye writes with the mesmerizing power of the snowstorms that so often come howling off Lake Superior. I am in awe of how he swirls through so many years and juggles so many characters, all of them unforgettable and weighed down by secrets and regrets and desires that burn through the hoarfrost of Geye's bristling sentences."
— Benjamin Percy

Publishers Weekly
In Geye’s second novel, Odd Eide is born of a crime into difficult late-19th-century rural Minnesota and orphaned within days. But the real tragic figures in this dour, detached novel are the women in Odd’s life: his mother, a young Norwegian immigrant living in a crude logging camp; and Rebekah, who helps raise Odd in his adoptive home. When Odd comes of age, he and Rebekah, several years apart, fall in love and leave backwater Gunflint behind. The complex and ambivalent Rebekah helps compensate for the frustrating muddiness that characterizes much of this novel. Geye is a thoughtful writer, but his constant shifts between 1896 and 1920, possibly intended to induce tension that the plot doesn’t merit, slow the characters’ development and prompt readers to stop caring. Of little assistance here is the annoyingly earnest Odd, who Geye (Safe From the Sea) places at the novel’s center. The story concerns his redemption, but he has done little to need or earn it in comparison to Rebekah or his mother. After a too-long struggle with good bones but inadequate flesh, the novel draws to an appropriately weary ending. Agent: Laura Langlie. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781609531003
  • Publisher: Unbridled Books
  • Publication date: 6/4/2013
  • Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 170,466
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author


Peter Geye received his M.F.A. from the University of New Orleans and his Ph.D. from Western Michigan University, where he was editor of Third Coast. Also the author of the award-winning novel, Safe from the Sea, he lives in Minnesota.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 26, 2012

    This is a story about love, heartache, and making the most of wh

    This is a story about love, heartache, and making the most of what you have. The love that Rebekah and Odd share is precarious, and the love between Hosea and Odd is built on lies and respect. Because none of the relationships in this book are pure or “happily ever after”, it becomes easier to relate to these characters. Hosea is sneaky and strict, but he’s afraid of being alone. Rebekah is a little selfish and distant, but she’s afraid of being hurt. The only person not acting out of complete fear is Odd. His character is almost childish in his naïve love for Rebekah, but it’s admirable. This story is not about happiness or happy endings, it’s about surviving, both physically and emotionally. And that’s something we’re all trying to do.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2013

    This is a great story about life in hard times and hard places,

    This is a great story about life in hard times and hard places, about relationships that are gravely flawed and people who do what they have to to survive.  Beautifully written.  Highly recommend.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2013

    I loved this book, I found myself reading it every chance I had

    I loved this book, I found myself reading it every chance I had. I was hooked at once , a real page turner. I would highly recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 17, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Leif Enger said it best..."The Lighthouse Road is like a ci

    Leif Enger said it best..."The Lighthouse Road is like a cinematic thundercloud gusting across the northern landscape"
    I very much wanted to read this book as it is set very close to where I live and I love nothing more than to read about places that I have lived.

    Like a snowstorm seen in the distance rolling along the land this book starts out slowly, letting you get to know the characters and the landscape, as the words drift around in your head you become enmeshed in this story of Love gone awry, of the incredibly difficult lives the early settlers had, and like a snowstorm when it is done, in the end all is white and cold and quiet. The words in this story are as beautiful as my northern land is, poetic and sparse.
    The story starts out in the 1890’s with Thea Eide’s, a young Norwegian immigrant woman who has come to the wild shores of lake Superior and finds herself working in a lumberjack camp. She is alone and does not speak the language. She is taken in by Hosea Grimm the towns doctor and owner of the local apothecary. Thea dies shortly after giving birth to her son Odd (yes, it is Odd…:) and the love and care of the infant Odd goes to Hosea and his daughter Rebekah.
    Odd grows to manhood and falls in love with someone he should not. He builds a gorgeous boat by hand to cross the large and dangerous great lake, Superior and take him & his beloved far from all that he knows.
    A wonderful book, I will be looking forward to more from Mr. Geye

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    Olivia

    Smiles. Meet me at my room- next result.

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2012

    Ben

    Oh hey!

    0 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

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