Although there are very honourable mentions for When Nights Were Cold by Susanna Jones, 11.22.63 by Stephen King, and a very close runner-up decision for Leif G.W. Persson's Another Time, Another Life, Shade Point's Book of the Year 2012 goes to The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman.
Reviewed on the site just under a year ago now, this heartbreaking novel has sustained in the memory more than any other reviewed last year. Surprising, unbound by genre, deeply moving, it was wonderful. With 71 five-star reviews on Amazon in less than a year, it has clearly been welcomed by many in the same way.
Biased perhaps, but the lighthouse setting was beautifully rendered and deeply haunting. The characters and their dilemmas were completely immersive, the writing was extraordinary and the emotional pull of the story was astonishing. I still think on it often, when fragments of the story flit to mind for one unexpected reason or another, much as I do with some of the best works of fiction I have ever read.
Our full review from January 2012 is here.