Why did I love this book?
To the Lighthouse is Virginia Woolf’s most autobiographical novel.
Ostensibly set in Scotland, Woolf is describing her own childhood holidays in Talland House, St Ives Cornwall which gave her intense happiness. The story is of the Ramsay family and their friends (who stand in for Woolf’s family) on vacation.
Lily Briscoe, an artist is painting Mrs Ramsay’s portrait which Lily completes after Mrs Ramsay’s sudden death; and Lily has her ‘vision’. Beautifully evocative of Cornish landscape, Woolf captures the inner feelings of characters impressionistically and movingly.
I took Woolf’s Lily Briscoe as my heroine in my novel and depict her emotional journey in becoming a professional artist and solving the mystery of Mrs. Ramsay’s suspicious death. In 2022, after my four-year campaign, I unveiled a plaque to Woolf on Talland House, St Ives. Like Lily, I had my vision.