The Open World
A fascinating novel about secrets, finding a home and early colonial New Zealand.
‘I miss my smiling son more than any other man before or since.’
London 1866. Elizabeth Smith is struggling to survive when she hears that her former New Zealand employers, Judge and Lady Martin, are returning to England. Accompanied by her dear friend, the lunatic Reverend Cotton, she makes a pilgrimage to settle old scores. Elizabeth is also accompanied by liberal doses of opiates and two small ghosts, walking by her side, whispering, murmuring, calling her.
Award-winning writer Stephanie Johnson lovingly peoples a landscape of the past. Mid-century New Zealand, London and the spa town of Buxton are vividly evoked in a novel about motherhood, earliest colonial days, pharmacology and poreirewa – the yearning for absent loved ones.
NOMINATING LIBRARY COMMENTS
The Open World is an intensely colourful and very evocative read which really invites the reader’s interest in the people and places of long ago. It justaposes the old and the new worlds in a very real way which is still significant today.