Author and Artist Lynn Guenther will be present during this First Friday Celebration from 3-5 pm to discuss the illustrations and artifacts used in her research for her creative work of historical fiction “Light of the Bay: Laura Hecox, Keeper of the Santa Cruz Lighthouse.” Artifacts and illustrations related to the book will be on display at the Santa Cruz Public Libraries Downtown Branch now through the end of January.
Enjoy Suki Wessling’s short interview with Lynn for Talk of the Bay.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Pioneer, naturalist, collector, activist, lighthouse keeper, museum benefactor—few people accomplished more in their lifetimes, or meant more to the history of Santa Cruz, California, than Laura Hecox (1854–1919). The historical novel Light of the Bay brings Laura to life, telling her remarkable story from a first-person perspective.
As she prepares to retire after 50 years of work as a lighthouse keeper at Point Santa Cruz, Laura looks back on her life and shares the memories connected with treasured objects from her famous collection of scientific specimens and historic artifacts. Each object anchors a chapter in Laura’s epic coming-of-age story and appears in an original illustration.
Through Laura’s eyes, readers travel across the country by wagon train, witness the growth of Santa Cruz following California statehood, develop a passion for scientific inquiry, meet an array of colorful historic figures, and fall in love. They also experience the logging of the giant redwood forests, the extinction of wildlife species in Monterey Bay, the persecution of Native Americans and immigrants, and other costs of “progress.”