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Stargazing by Peter Hill

By Pamelascott

When Peter Hill, a student at Dundee College of Art, answered an advert in The Scotsman seeking lighthouse keepers, little did he imagine that within a month he would be living with three men he didn't know in a lighthouse on Pladda, a small remote island off the west coast of Scotland. Hill was nineteen, it was 1973 and, with his head fed by Vietnam, Zappa, Kerouac, Vonnegut, Watergate and Coronation Street, he spent six months on various lighthouses, "keeping" with all manner of unusual and fascinating people. Within thirty years this way of life was to have disappeared entirely. The resulting book is a charming and beautifully written memoir that is not only a heartfelt lament for Hill's own youth and innocence but also for a simpler and more honest age.


[In 1973, I worked as a lighthouse keeper on three islands off the west coast of Scotland]


(Canongate Books, 16 March 2012, first published 1 January 2003, 336 pages, ebook, A Year Of @EpicReads 2019, a book about something you want to do, bought from @AmazonKindle)



I chose to read this book because I would love to live in a lighthouse. I've been fascinated with them since I was a child. I have no idea why. I really enjoyed this book. Stargazing is fascinating, funny and sad at the same time. It's sad that the way of life the author is introduced to for six months is gone, just a distant memory. It's just one of the victims of technology and advancement. Lighthousekeeping is not the only profession and way of life to have been altered or removed entirely. This is a profoundly sad book especially towards the end. I enjoyed every word, though. My obsession and fascination with lighthouses hasn't waned.

Stargazing by Peter Hill Stargazing Peter Hill

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