The Lighthouse Road: A Novel

The Lighthouse Road: A Novel

4.7 7
by Peter Geye
     
 

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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… See more details below

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.

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:
06/04/2013
Edition description:
First Trade Paper Edition
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
715,680
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.20(d)

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