"Sometimes life turns out hard, Isabel. Sometimes it just bites right through you. And sometimes, just when you think it's done its worst, it comes back and takes another chunk."Remember when you were four years old, and your mother was just about your entire world? If you can remember that long-ago feeling of attachment to a parent, or if you have a child, or if you have longed for a child of your own, your heart will break for little Lucy. And it will break for all the grown-ups who loved her, whether they had a right to or not. This story can feel so slow that you might be tempted to give up. It's gorgeously written, but slooooow. Much of it takes place on a lighthouse rock 100 miles off the tip of Western Australia. The setting accounts in part for the pokey pace, but it's also a big part of the novel's charm. Somewhere in the last third of the book you'll begin to appreciate the mastery in the careful build-up. The pace will pick up (a bit) and you'll be glad you stayed with it.