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The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  5,237 ratings  ·  914 reviews
From The New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Came Home comes a historical novel inspired by true events, and the extraordinary female lighthouse keepers of the past two hundred years.

They call me a heroine, but I am not deserving of such accolades. I am just an ordinary young woman who did her duty.”

1838: Northumberland, England. Longstone Lighthouse on/>They
Paperback, 383 pages
Published October 9th 2018 by William Morrow Paperbacks
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Asteropê Here's the blurb:
“They call me a heroine, but I am not deserving of such accolades. I am just an ordinary young woman who did her duty.”
Here's the blurb:
“They call me a heroine, but I am not deserving of such accolades. I am just an ordinary young woman who did her duty.”

1838: Northumberland, England. Longstone Lighthouse on the Farne Islands has been Grace Darling’s home for all of her twenty-two years. When she and her father rescue shipwreck survivors in a furious storm, Grace becomes celebrated throughout England, the subject of poems, ballads, and plays. But far more precious than her unsought fame is the friendship that develops between Grace and a visiting artist. Just as George Emmerson captures Grace with his brushes, she in turn captures his heart.

1938: Newport, Rhode Island. Nineteen-years-old and pregnant, Matilda Emmerson has been sent away from Ireland in disgrace. She is to stay with Harriet, a reclusive relative and assistant lighthouse keeper, until her baby is born. A discarded, half-finished portrait opens a window into Matilda’s family history. As a deadly hurricane approaches, two women, living a century apart, will be linked forever by their instinctive acts of courage and love.(less)
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Average rating 4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,237 ratings  ·  914 reviews

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Lindsay - Traveling Sister
5+ stars!

Excuse me, while I dust off my Favourites shelf to make room for this beautiful, spellbinding, unforgettable novel that has secured a forever spot in my heart. Not only does this mesmerizing book belong on my Favourites shelf, it easily takes top spot as my favourite read of 2018! I simply cannot imagine anything surpassing the love I have for this story.

I have such a soft spot for books involving lighthouses. There is something about them that I am drawn to – they have suc
Angela M
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars.

“My sister Thomasin used to say she imagined the stairwell was a long vein running from the heart of the lighthouse. In one way or another, we have all attached human qualities to these old stone walls so that it has become another member of the family, not just a building to house us .”

When a novel is based on the life of a real person, it’s many times a dilemma for me on how to rate it because I inevitably try to find out more about the person when I’m reading the book a
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
5 huggable stars to The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

When you have a favorite author, you count the days until her next release. The day came for Hazel Gaynor and The Lightkeeper’s Daughter, and it lived up to my every expectation!

First of all, in case you didn’t know, I am obsessed with lighthouses. I grew up near one, my husband proposed to me there, and we later married near another. There is something both mystical and majestic about them, along with their steadfast beaming light signalin
Diane S ☔
Oct 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Two strong, able women, a century apart, and their lives as keepers of a lighthouse.


The settings, lighthouses are one of the things I seek out on my vacations. I love them and the role they have played throughout history.
Grace Darling was a real person, and as always that sets a different tone to the story, an authenticity if you will. She did live in a lighthouse on Farne Island and did help rescue nine people when the steamer, Fecfashire broke apa
Norma * Traveling Sister
Captivating, affecting & heart-wrenching!

This was my very first HAZEL GAYNOR book, and I must say that I absolutely loved her writing style. I was immediately drawn into this extraordinary story by her beautiful storytelling right from the very first page and had me totally immersed, entertained, and interested throughout this entire book.

THE LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER’S DAUGHTER by HAZEL GAYNOR is an absolutely stunning, sad, moving, heartwarming, and an excellent historical

4.5 Stars

”I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.”
-- Louisa May Alcott

When I was a child, there was an older man, a former sea Captain who lived in a tiny cabin overlooking one of the lakes in our town. He got by on doing odd jobs in the neighborhood and on whatever else he might have received. I know my father had somewhat of a soft spot for him, where my mother disliked his rough, unmannered ways. Through him, I heard stories of life on the
Nov 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book very much. This is the story of two main characters Grace and Matilda, a century apart, so there is a dual timeline.
Part of the story was based on the real story of Grace Darling, who with her family, lived in and ran the Longstone Lighthouse off the coast of Northumberland in 1838, where she and her father were involved in a rescue after a shipwreck. Grace Darling became a real hero.
Matilda is a young unwed woman in Ireland, in 1938, who finds herself with ch
Elyse (retired from reviewing/semi hiatus) Walters
Settings are either in Ireland.....
or America...
Back & Forward storytelling...
Between two centuries....
1938... and 1838

With 100 years between Grace and Matilda, ... in this historical fiction...they will link together.

I enjoyed this story - but felt the style in which this book was written… Jumping back-and-forth 100 years was a little jarring.... spoiling my enjoyment of ‘being-here-now’.

Harriet is the third female in this novel you’ll meet.
Holly  B
I listened to most of this one on Audible and really enjoyed the book and the narrator. The story drew me in early and I adored the character of Grace. She was told that she would never find a husband if she hid away in her "tower" and that she shouldn't expect a "tide to deliver one." The whole lighthouse setting was intriguing.

The timeline alternates from the Longstone Lighthouse in 1838 to Ireland in 1938. A century apart the two stories will connect the family ties that link the
Nov 18, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars

A lovely story that was inspired by true events. Charming and vivid this was an easy and entertaining read. A story about strong women that is beautifully imagined and written

I love books where a lighthouse or the Island become an extra character in a story and The Lighthouse Keeper's daughter is my first novel by Hazel Gaynor and I really enjoyed the read.
This is an historical fiction story where a mystery and a love story and a true event all marry to give the reader this page t
To me, there is nothing like a well written, inspiring, historical fiction. It can and does move you into a realm where you are placed inside of a character, a place where for a time you live as they lived, a place where you feel a sense of kinship, of belonging, or coming together with what is good, courageous, and noble. This is what the book, The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter did for me.

A book that inspires one is a treasure and this book written so beautifully about a young woman
DJ Sakata
My Rating:


Favorite Quotes:

“Mam was at her snoring again. Thought it was the cannons firing from Bamburgh to signal a shipwreck.” He opens one eye. “Don’t tell her I said that.”

I’ve seen how often women marry and become less of themselves, like scraps of pastry cut away and reused in some other, less important way.

She is utterly in thrall of him and I am ashamed to feel a prick of jealousy as I observe her, knowing she will never look at me that way. Daugh
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Grace Darling and her family have manned the Longstone Lighthouse in Northumberland England for all of her life. The year is 1838, and during a terrifying storm Grace and her father risk their lives to save the survivors of a nearby shipwreck. Grace soon becomes a national hero, a position that makes her uncomfortable with the fame. Grace is hounded by admirers, but the only one who interests her is George Emmerson, an artist she met while he was visiting the island. He had not only captured her ...more
Brenda -Traveling Sister host of The Traveling Friends
The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter was an unexpected gem I stumbled upon thanks to HarperCollins Canada. I quickly added it as a group read for the Traveling Sisters and along with Norma, Lindsay and I two other sisters joined in on the discussion with us.

It’s an emotional gem of a story that is so perfectly paced and took us on the best possible emotional journey I could imagine. The characters crept into our hearts and haven’t let go.  This story and the characters are unforgettable
Kate Quinn
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was given an ARC of this book for the purpose of offering a cover quote if I enjoyed it, and I certainly did. Hazel Gaynor (I loved her LAST CHRISTMAS IN PARIS, co-written with Heather Webbe) shines a brilliant light here on female courage and endurance in the face of storms both internal and external. Quiet Grace Darling becomes a heroine of the Victorian age when she performs a daring rescue at sea, and finds her fame harder to endure than the solitude of her lighthouse-bound life. A century ...more
Louise Wilson
Sep 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Stephanie (Stephanie's Novel Fiction~on hiatus))
When I picked up The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter, I expected to enjoy it since I love Hazel Gaynor's writing but what I didn't expect was to feel so many emotions while reading the book or to finish the book a sobbing mess of tears! 

Gaynor's novel is inspired by the true story of Grace Darling, a lighthouse keeper's daughter and is an extraordinary novel that is just gorgeously written and heartwrenching. Gaynor masterfully weaves the story of Grace in 1838 with the story of Matilda Emmerson
Dale Harcombe
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
1938 Matilda Emmerson is sent by her parents away from Ireland and off to America in disgrace. In America she is to stay with a reclusive relative Harriet Flaherty, who is a lighthouse keeper in Newport, Rhode Island. The other story takes place in 1838 when a fierce storm blows up off the Northumberland Coast. Grace Darling, the lighthouse keeper’s daughter, urges her father that they must go and help try and rescue any survivors from the shipwreck that occurs. These actions and her bravery bri ...more
Heather Webb
Jul 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A lighthouse keeper is such a solitary pursuit, it makes one wonder what sort of person would choose it as a profession. A heroine, as it turns out. THE LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER’S DAUGHTER is a beautifully rendered tale of Britain’s most famous lighthouse keeper, Grace Darling, and an American keeper in Newport one hundred years later, whose lives are linked by history and tragedy. Gaynor’s inspired prose portrays the vast landscape of sea and sky, and her characters captured my heart--I even shed a te ...more
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
THE LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER'S DAUGHTER is a dual storyline book about two women living 100 years separate. In 1838 Northumberland, England, Grace Darling lives on the Farne Island where her father is the lighthouse keeper. Grace and her father save some shipwreck survivors during a terrible storm and that makes her celebrated all through England. In 1938, young Matilda Emmerson is sent away to Newport, Rhode Island from Ireland after becoming pregnant. She's staying with her relative, Harriet, an assistant li ...more

Title: The Lighthouse Keeper's Daughter
Series: Standalone
Author: Hazel Gaynor
Release date: October 9, 2018
Cliffhanger: No

Like a curious child pushing open doors to rooms they are forbidden to enter, I tug on the distant threads that connect me to them, determined to unravel the tangled knots of the past so that I can find the place where their story ends, and mine begins.

This was my very first Hazel Gaynor book, and I absolutely loved her writing style. A lot of historical fiction begins a bit dry and takes time to engage me, but Gaynor's storytelling feels effortless from theNo
Beth McCraw
Dec 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh my heart!!! A new favorite author and a beautiful story ❤ ...more
Susan Peterson
Aug 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If I could, I’d give this book a million for each tear I shed, one for each time I smiled at the beauty of this story.
I’m wiping tears, my throat clogged, having just finished The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter. I was so incredibly moved by this story...Grace’s and Matilda’s. I was brought to tears throughout, but there were also so many moments of love and exultation.
This book is filled with passion and the joy of living life to its fullest; a wondrous story of mothers and daughter
Karen M
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Two time periods, two stories, and two young women who are so intertwined that I found myself, at times, wanting to read both stories at the same time. If the author dwelt too long on one character, I became impatient to read about the other character, so I just read as fast as I could and devoted as much time in my day as possible to reading.

In 1938 we meet Matilda. A potential disgrace to her political Father and a complete disappoint to her distant Mother. Matilda has been banishe
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gaynor's novel revolves around three women and the choices they make in life. Grace Darling, the skilled daughter of the keeper of a lighthouse in England, is involved with her father in a violent storm in 1838. Grace bravely rescues Sarah Dawson from a shipwreck. Grace then is at the center of much unwanted fame. A century later, an unmarried, pregnant, Matilda Emmerson, at 19, is shamefully relegated from Ireland to Newport, RI., where she is chaperoned by a relative,Harriet Flaherty, a mystif ...more
Maureen DeLuca
Jan 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like/love reading historical fiction - you should enjoy this one! Very good read !!
Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter is narrated by the three lead female characters: Grace, whose story takes place between 1838 and 1842; and Matilda and Harriet, whose story takes place 100 years later in 1938. The events of 1838 form the framework for everything that follows. There are several other lesser characters who are significant to the story: Grace’s parents, Sarah Dawson, and George Emmerson. And then there are the storms and the lighthouses themselves – the Longstone Lighthouse, the Rose Islan ...more
Oct 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
5 stars to this "I want to be a lighthouse keeper" book. I must admit that I completely forgot that I read "The Cottingly Secret" by this author and I loved it, so it's no surprise that I adored this one too.

Two alternating timelines and stories here, but both all about women and lighthouse keeping. One storyline is 1838 England and fleshes out real-life heroine Grace Darling. She spots shipwreck survivors and insists on setting out with her father to rescue them. Gaynor is such a gr
Stephanie Anze
Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Inclement weather is part of the fabric of life [at Longstone]."

Matilda Emmerson has been shunned from her home in England and sent to live with a relative in America until her situation is solved. That is, until she gives birth as an unwed woman far away from the eyes of her parents and their society. Having trouble relating to her host, Matilda uncovers a painting of a woman that soon bridges the gap. Grace Darling is a lighthouse keeper's daughter that spots a shipwrecked site an
Maureen Timerman
Oct 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
I found myself quickly immersed in this story, a story of life and death, and love and losing.
The author did a wonderful job of melding the centuries, with the lighthouse guiding the lives of people chosen to operate them. When you know that this book is based on a true story, and see how fragile life is.
A story woven with love, and I didn’t see some of it coming, but you might want to keep the tissues handy!
We span decades and centuries and the book comes together beautifully,
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Hazel Gaynor is the acclaimed New York Times, USA Today and international bestselling author of A MEMORY OF VIOLETS and THE GIRL WHO CAME HOME, for which she received the 2015 Romantic Novelists’ Association Historical Novel of the Year award. Her third novel, THE GIRL FROM THE SAVOY, was an Irish Times and Globe and Mail bestseller, and was shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards Popular Fiction Bo ...more
“Even the brave were once afraid. However well I might hide it, the truth is, I am terrified.” 1 likes
“There will always be someone willing to save us, Grace. Even a stranger whose name we don’t know. That is the very best of humanity. That is what puts my mind at ease on a day like today.” 0 likes
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