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Lighthouse Keeper, The Paperback – 1 May 2012

3.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Snowbooks (1 May 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1907777628
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907777622
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 12.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,342 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Book Description

A TERRIFYING MYSTERY OF THE SEA

In December 1900, three lighthouse keepers vanished without
trace from the remote Scottish island of Eilean Mòr. An emergency relief crew
was sent to man the lighthouse. At the end of their month-long duty, they
resigned from their posts, and never spoke of what they had experienced on the
island. The mystery of Eilean Mòr has never been solved. Until now.

In the present, a group of environmental researchers arrives
on the island to observe the wildlife. While exploring the lighthouse, now
automated and deserted, one of the team discovers a manuscript written by one
of the relief keepers, a man named Alec Dalemore. As a sudden storm moves in,
cutting off their escape, the researchers come to realise that Dalemore wrote
the manuscript as a warning to all the lighthouse keepers who would come after
him. A warning of something on Eilean Mòr and in the surrounding ocean -
something ancient and powerful, and strange beyond imagining...

The Lighthouse Keeper is a supernatural tale based on the Flannan Isles
mystery, one of the greatest unsolved enigmas in maritime history. Blending
factual firsthand reports with speculative fiction, the novel takes the reader
on a journey to the edge of reality, where the greatest of human fears - the
fear of the unknown - holds dominion.                         

About the Author

Alan K Baker was born in Birmingham in 1964. He has published a number of non-fiction books on the paranormal and popular history, which have been translated into seven languages. Daniel Acacio is an illustrator.


Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I got The Lighthouse Keeper out of curiosity to see what the author did with the well known true story of the disappeared keepers. I was sorely disappointed. Despite all the familiar devices--a tale within a tale, an ancient book in the library, and parallel narratives, the story collapsed at the end like a cake that met with an unfortunate chill just as it was rising.

The description of the setting is apt and evocative. How could a ghost story set on a mysterious Scottish island fail to capture the imagination? Yet, for me, it failed badly.
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Format: Paperback
My Expectations
Based on my experience with the previous books by Alan K. Baker and after the book description I expected a most entertaining and excellent written book that would drive me to the edge of my chair. I was pretty nosey to see how Alan K Baker would explain the vanish of the three lighthouse keepers and if he keeps his promise stated in the last sentence of the book description:
"[...], the novel takes the reader on a journey to the edge of reality, where the greatest of human fears - the fear of the unknown - holds dominion.

The Delivery
I read the 276 pages in two sessions which is not usual for me and should give you a first hint that I have been hooked by the story.

Within the first 21 pages Alan K. Tuner delivers the full set up for the story. After the introduction done by a telegram from 26 December 1900 the author moves forward to the year 1999 on Sunday 19 July, 4.30 PM, location Eilean Mòr (= big isle) part of the Flannan Isles. We meet a group of people - Jennifer Leigh, Donald Webb, Max Kaminsky, Nick Bowman - all working for the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) and Rebecca Garratt who is in her first year of her MA in history.
Of course there are certain relationships in between the protagonists which I do not explain. Beside that there are only two more information (one vague and one precise) necessary to set the wheel in motion.
Some unusual things happen and Rebecca discovers a book:
The Testament of Alec Dalemore, Occasional Keeper

From that point on the story continues with two interwoven narrative threads. There are the events of the group itself and then they read together the discovered book which contains the story of Alec Dalemore. A story which starts on 5th of January 1901. Alan K.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Read the book without realising it was the same author behind The Martian Ambassador and was blown away...again. In the Lighthouse Keeper Mr Baker creates an eerie and atmospheric thriller that gave me shivers up my spine, very different to the swashbuckling adventure of the Martian Ambassador. The plot is good, the characters alive and not annoying (often thrillers/horrors have to have the token annoying person that normally dies first) but the reason the book is five star is the manner in which it is written. The atmosphere captured within the prose has managed to convey an old fashioned hitchcock style thriller in a modern time. I look forward to the next Alan Baker book.
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Format: Paperback
( review of audible audiobook) This is quite a good book, with a strong atmosphere and a very Lovecraftian feel of "things Man was not meant to know and "non-Euclidian shapes from beyond space and time". It is intriguing, unnerving, but the author chooses to end without any explanation ( granted, explanations of mysteries on this scale could not be grasped by our puny minds) and that defeats, in my opinion, the purpose of the book, which because of this failure becomes a long exercise in prose about the unknowable. In a similar vein, "Dark Matter", by Michelle Paver, read by Jeremy Northam, manages to be bizarre AND extremely entertaining...
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Format: Paperback
The Lighthouse Keeper' immediately caught my attention as I'm a big fan of HP Lovecraft and the other writers of that ilk. Once my copy arrived, I settled down and began to read.

I was not disapointed.

In fact, I ws so gripped by the unfolding narrative that I read the whole book in a single sitting. The two time frames in the book are woven together in a seamless manner with well defined characters and a palpable sense of menace pervading the whole work.

Highly recommended
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Format: Paperback
I saw this book in a mainstream bookshop. My attention was drawn to the cover. I'm a fan of lighthouses and Scottish Islands! I read the back cover and decided to purchase the book. This turned out to be one of my best decisions. I found the descriptions of the island and lighthouse excellent.
The stroyline is superb. It had the hairs on the back of my neck standing up and left me wanting to read deep into the night.
I look forward to reading more of Mr Bakers books.

Buy it and read it at night for additional atmosphere!
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By DS on 23 July 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a wasted opportunity. Based on a real-life mystery, with a remote setting, communications cut off from the rest of the world... and the author makes a complete mess of it. I don't know what Baker was trying to suggest was actually happening on the island - and I suspect he doesn't either - but by time I finished the book I'd given up caring. Others here have claimed it is "Lovecraftian", but I wonder if they've ever actually read any HPL, or if they were just taken in by the quote at the start of this book. This story isn't at all "Lovecraftian" - it would probably have been a whole lot better if it was - it's just a mess. The story-within-a-story structure doesn't work (the modern parts seem completely superfluous) and the ending is simply abysmal (and not in a Lovecraftian sense). I read the famous poem based on this historical mystery way back when I was in primary school, and have always thought it would be the great basis for a horror story - now I just hope that this very poor attempt from Baker doesn't mean that a much better writer won't feel able to tackle the story now.
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