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Audible Sample

The Lighthouse Audio Download – Unabridged

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Product Description

Shortlisted for: New Writer of the Year - Specsavers National Book Awards 2012

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2012

The Lighthouse begins on a North Sea ferry, on the blustery outer deck of which stands Futh: a middle-aged, recently-separated man heading to Germany for a restorative walking holiday. After an encounter with an inexplicably hostile barman at a family-run hotel in Hellhaus, Futh sets out on his week-long circular walk along the Rhine. As he travels, he contemplates his childhood, a complicated friendship with the son of a lonely neighbour, his parents' broken marriage and his own. But the story he keeps coming back to, the one that affects all others, is his mother abandoning him as a boy. Recalling his first trip to Germany with his newly single father, Futh is mindful of something he neglected to do there; an omission which threatens to have devastating repercussions for him this time around.

At the end of the week, sunburnt and blistered, Futh comes to the end of his pilgrimage, returning to what he sees as the sanctuary of the Hellhaus hotel; however, he is blissfully unaware of the events which have been unfolding there in his absence.

©2012 Alison Moore (P)2012 Audible Ltd

Product details

  • Audio Download
  • Listening Length: 4 hours and 59 minutes
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: Audible Studios
  • Release Date: 11 Sept. 2012
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0099S2E76
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank:

Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. K. A. Wheatley TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback
It's hard to pinpoint how I feel about this book. Firstly, I can see why it has been shortlisted for lots of awards. It is clever, and playful in its construction if not its subject matter. It is beautifully, tightly written, and there is not a wasted word in the whole book. It is thoughtful and eerie, and leaves you pondering it long after you have read it.

On the other hand, having read it, I found myself wondering why I had stuck with it.

It tells the story of Futh, a bunglingly incompetent, lonely, emotionally illiterate man in middle age, whose wife has left him, and who goes on a walking holiday in Germany to reinvigorate himself before coming home to start a new life. It also tells the story of Ester, a blowsy, alcoholic, German land lady, whose life has turned out to be full of disappointment and haunted with a misery she is incapable of dealing with and blots out with sex and gin. Ester and Futh's lives intertwine and their chance encounter leads to disaster.

The story is horrible in the way it maps out the futility and drab misery of wasted human existence, both Futh and Ester's. Its sense of impending doom gets more and more persistent as the story unfolds and you find yourself willing Futh in particular, to wake up to himself and his life. As it is, there is nothing to be done, and the consequence is a car crash of a book that leaves you feeling unsettled and sad with the world.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rocke Harder on 18 Jan. 2013
Format: Paperback
No point in running through the story line of this book as it has been done to death by previous reviewers.

It was a bleak and down beat read - but what was interesting were the constant flashbacks to earlier scenes and events in the lives of the two main characters. The constant references to smells tell us that this is a powerful component of memory and one which is able to encapsulate the vividness of the moment and forever imprint it. Both characters are devastatingly affected by past events and the lack of love received in their lives; they appear to revisit these issues over and over again. But strangely they both seem to lack any real depth or circumspection - as if they are resigned to their fates - or have even died a little inside.

I do wonder why writers write books like this - I am sure it was wonderfully crafted - brimming with imagery and meaning - and I am also sure all of this deserved a lot of working out by the reader - meditation and then enlightenment. But what are they trying to achieve? The trouble is I haven't got the time or the inclination to work it all out and so much of the book was wasted on me.

No wonder it was a Booker Prize candidate because this sort of book will impress the judges. However, it did not lift the spirits.

Overall - an interesting if not a particularly enjoyable read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By iris on 10 Sept. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have recently bought and read this book,
after just finding out about Alison Moore having read about the Pre war house book.
The Lighthouse story has its main character Futh and his parents , straight away I got the sense that Futh was a man that had had his relationship and his way of life ruined somewhat by his strange parents I think Futh may have behaved differently but I think had his life shaped and conditioned by his parents
This book is dark and haunting but also very vague it continues throughout feeling a bit like groundhog day Futh goes on his walking holiday I think for escape to find himself again after a break down of his relationship but it doesn't work his mother is as equally as unhappy in her relationships seeking comfort affection and friendship in others
I noticed the way that Futh saw others was somewhat odd his quietness and shyness was almost unsettling and upsetting his clinginess toward his mother needing the familiar things around him that reminded him of his mum showed that this was a man who craved love and attention as well as being given the ability to find his voice
I can see that Fuths dad must have had his troubles too I think both Futh and his parents were going around in circles knowing they were unhappy and despite Fuths mum needing to escape, they seem as though they are stuck in a stuffy boring small family unit all desperate to break away from one another, for a better future
I felt quite sad for Futh all the way throughout this book bless him, he just seemed so accepting of being trapped in unhappy situations and he just didn't question it I hoped at the end of the book that futh and his family would find peace and things would improve but it doesn't ...
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 17 Oct. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book was quite promising at the beginning. The writing style is very detailed and clear. The present tense for the actual journey he is undertaking is contrasted against the past tense for his back story, and this is done very well. However, the book is written throughout in very close focus, which gets a little wearisome after a while. The observation of minute details, which at first impresses for the expertise behind it, becomes wearying and relentless after a while.

As other reviewers have said, the main character, Futh, is rather dull, and personally I found his name really irritating by the end of the book. Although bad things happen to him, it is difficult to feel much sympathy towards him because there is little to like about him. The story doesn't really develop - although his past is revealed in bits, it is more or less all the same - people don't like him, and he doesn't have very much fun. The book could begin and end anywhere and the effect would be the same. The ending is a mild blip on a more or less horizontal line.
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