Now reissued with a stunning new jacket look, The Colour is a gripping drama of sacrifice and greed set during the mid-nineteenth-century gold rush in New Zealand.
Rose Tremain's bestselling novels have been published in thirty countries and have won many awards, including the Orange Prize (The Road Home), the Whitbread Novel of the Year (Music & Silence) and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize (Sacred Country); Restoration was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Rose Tremain was made a CBE in 2007 and was appointed Chancellor of the University of East Anglia in 2013. She lives in Norfolk and London with the biographer, Richard Holmes. www.rosetremain.co.uk
Newlyweds Joseph and Harriet Blackstone leave England to seek their fortune in 19th-century New Zealand, but Joseph's discovery of gold does not turn out to be the answer to their dreams. Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
Readers familiar with British writer Tremain's magisterial historical novel, Restoration, or her psychologically acute study of madness, Music & Silence, will not be surprised at the accuracy of historical detail in this elegant and dramatic novel about the mid-19th-century gold rush in New Zealand or by her nuanced portrait of the disintegration of a marriage. Writing at the top of her form, she tells a complex story centering on two immigrants to New Zealand, whose recent marriage represents new hopes for both of them. Joseph Blackstone fled England to rid himself of memories of a shameful act; cold and secretive, he is emotionally constricted by guilt. Strong, spirited ex-governess Harriet Salt has narrowly avoided spinsterdom; to her, New Zealand represents the freedom to explore new horizons. Together with Joseph's mother, they attempt to build a farm on the flats outside of Christchurch, but when Joseph finds gold in the creek, he becomes obsessed by "the colour," as the fabulous metal is known. Abandoning both women, he travels by ship to the west coast, where he encounters hundreds of other desperate men and the clamorous, filthy, dehumanizing conditions in which they live. Later, when Harriet attempts to follow him by land, she cannot cross the gorge between the Southern Alps, justly called "the stairway from hell." By the time she does join him, each of them despises the other, yet the discovery of gold binds them in a new way. From this point on, the narrative, already full of subtleties and surprises, becomes riveting, as nature and human nature collide. There's a wonderful subplot about the mystical connection of a white boy and his Maori nurse, and an inspired depiction of a Chinese gardener who peddles his vegetables and becomes the instrument of Harriet's salvation. With its combination of vivid historical adventure and sensual, late-blooming romance, it's hard to see how this novel can miss winning a new audience for the immensely talented Tremain. (May 21) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Tremain is a magnificent storyteller with an enormous story to tell
* Independent on Sunday *
This is a writer whose breadth of imagination and supple prose transcend the genre: she is one of the finest writers in England * Daily Telegraph *
Tremain has produced her own wondrous piece of gold * Scotsman *
A fabulous work, bravely imaginative, deeply moving, surprising, invigorating and satisfying * Independent *
This is a beautifully crafted book - at once a gripping adventure story and a compelling portrayal of human emotion at its bravest and its most vulnerable * Economist *