Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson.

You may have noticed my recent love for Jeanette Winterson. Ever since I read Weight, I’ve been in love. Winterson writes the words I’m thinking, the words I can’t find. She writes the way I wish I could write, the way I wish I could think. Every single word means something. It’s like food for my creative side.

I try to mark off the pages where there are really good lines in the books I read. With Winterson, I always chose almost every page.

I’ve read Weight, Sexing the Cherry and now Lighthousekeeping.

All three books are about stories. About telling stories, about life stories and about being a story. It’s brilliant. They are fact and fiction and neither. They are absolutely breathtaking from beginning to end.

Lighthousekeeping was exactly what I was expecting from Winterson, and even more. It’s about love and storytelling and the real meaning of truth. I have to put up some of my favourite quotes, though it will be hard to choose, because this book really caught me.

“Tell me a story, Pew.
What kind of story, child?
A story with a happy ending.
There’s no such thing in all the world.
As a happy ending?
As an ending.”

“You must never doubt the one you love.
But they might not be telling you the truth.
Nevermind that. You tell them the truth.
What do you mean?
You can’t be another person’s honesty, child, but you can be your own.
So what should I say?
When I love someone?
You should say it.”

“This is not a love story, but love is in it. That is, love is just outside it, looking for a way to break in.”

“I’ll call you, and we’ll light a fire, and drink some wine, and recognise each other in the place that is ours. Don’t wait. Don’t tell the story later. Life is so short. This stretch of sea and sand, this walk on the shore, before the tide covers everything we have done. I love you. The three most difficult words in the world. But what else can I say?”

The main character, Silver, is born lost. Fatherless, she belongs to a crooked house and crooked mother. When her mother dies, she belongs to no one and nowhere. And so she is sent to live with Pew, the blind lighthouse keeper, and become his apprentice. From him she learns how to tell her own story, how to write her own life and find her own truth.

And I truly felt as if, by the end of the book, I had found a little more of my own truth, my own story.

With every Jeanette Winterson book I read, my envy and inspiration grows. She is truly amazing. I wish I had her words.

1 Comment

  • By konfusedfae, July 13, 2008 @ 9:50 pm

    This made my heart melt.

    I need to read this.

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