Early nineteenth century New Zealand – the great chief Te Rauparaha has conquered tiny Kapiti Island, from where Ngati Toa launches brutal attacks on its southern enemies. Off the coast of Kapiti, English trader John Stewart seeks to trade with Te Rauparaha, setting off a train of events that forever change the course of New Zealand history.
Narrated by two English sailors on board Stewart’s ship, these events are also eerily resonant of a more distant memory, stretching back into mythology, of the charismatic leader Wulf and an ancient lament. History, it seems, may be repeating itself.
Wulf, Hamish Clayton’s inventive, brilliant first novel, explores a subject little covered in New Zealand fiction, and marks the emergence of a startlingly assured, exciting new voice.