Thursday, May 25, 2017

Review of Lighthouse by Eugenia Price

Marblehead Lighthouse photo by mbgphoto
Marblehead Lighthouse
I thoroughly enjoy traveling and visiting lighthouses and when it comes to reading, historical fiction is my favorite genre.   So, when my daughter found this book about a lighthouse that takes place in the eighteen century it was the perfect gift for me.  

Lighthouse by Eugenia Price

This  book is the first of the Saint Simons Trilogy and after reading it I am anxious to start on the next in the series.

The Setting

This book is set in the early days of the United States. It follows the life of a young man from his home in Massachusetts, to his travels to what is now Maine, Florida and finally Georgia. It starts out talking about Shays rebellion and follows history through the early 1800's.  Although it is a fictional story, the author did a lot of historical research and the main character along with several of the other people in the story were real people.

The Story

James Gould is a young man with a dream that he carries throughout his life.  He is raised in Massachusetts, but longs for the warmer climate in the lands of the south.  His other dream is to someday build a lighthouse.  He has plans that he has drawn for a lighthouse that he carries with him through the years, hoping that one day he can make his dream come true.  In the book you follow James life as he feels responsible to care for his mother and siblings and you root for him as he searches for a way to follow his dream first to the north to Bangor on the Penobscot River where he makes  a living to support his family, then to the south and lawless Spanish East Florida.  Along the way he meets a strong woman with whom he can share his dream.  The characters are very compelling and I found myself thinking about the book and looking forward to picking it back up whenever I needed to stop reading.

My Favorite Parts 

I love the way the author takes real people in history and weaves them into the story. It is also interesting to read about places I have visited such as Savannah and St.  Simons Island and imagine what they were like in the late 1700's and early 1800's.  Of course, I am very partial to lighthouses and the building of the lighthouse and then the care of the structure was the highlight for me.  It is hard to imagine the hardships early Americans struggled with during the beginning of the country.

This book is a real page turner and has my recommendation for anyone who enjoys historical fiction!

My  Visit to St. Simons

I visited St. Simons lighthouse several years ago, but now that I've read the book I'd love to visit again.  I think it will be much more meaningful after I've learned about the builder and his dream of the lighthouse.
Below is a Zazzle card I made from my photo of St. Simons lighthouse.

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. Mary Beth, I don't usually read historical fiction, but since I live in Savannah and have visited St. Simons and Florida, I am drawn to this book. It sounds fascinating, especially the settings and time period. Thanks for telling me about the book 'Lighthouse'. (Love your lighthouse photos, btw).

  2. I love historical fiction! I didn't even finish reading your review before I purchased it for my own kindle. It will be a bit before I can start it, but I am already looking for to getting to read a real page turner. Plus, I love the states mentioned in the book. You know, I am always searching for a good book!

  3. I read this trilogy and many other Price books in the early 1990's. I loved them all -- as far as I got. I remember few details now, but I was in the midst a book where a young man lost his family to a riverboat accident right about the time I lost my son. I simply could not read anymore about the grief and never got back to the book after that. I can't remember which book it was or even which series.

    Price really does do her research and makes the places and periods she writes about come alive. If things had turned out differently, I probably would have finished all the books she wrote. I still own many of them. Great review.

  4. I'm sure "Lighthouse" would be especially meaningful for anyone who has visited or lived in the areas mentioned in the book. It sounds like a wonderful story, though, and a great read for anyone who loves historical novels or simply enjoys eastern U.S. history. Thanks for the review, Mary Beth!

  5. sounds like a book I'd enjoy - love going back in time and imaging the plight of people, or to read stories of life back then - sounds like a lovely book to spend a rainy afternoon with all cozied up on the couch with a blanket

  6. I enjoy historical fiction, if it is well done and if it is a topic of interest. This sounds like both. Thank you for your review. Another book that is being added to my "to read" list.

  7. I can understand wanting to go back to a location after you've read a book about it!

  8. Mary Beth, there was no doubt in my mind as to who would have authored this piece. Your love for lighthouses is well known and we enjoy the fruits of your love! This series of books looks like a winner to me. I love being taken back in history to relive it through the lens of a different character. Thanks for adding to my summer reading list.


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