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  • Published: 3 October 2002
  • ISBN: 9780143018414
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 312
  • RRP: $24.95

Queen of Beauty




“A stunning debut novel … Queen of Beauty had me mesmerised from the first words … a masterful work.” - New Zealand Herald

Spanning three generations of a large Pakeha/Maori family in a narrative that skilfully handles interwoven stories and multiple voices, Queen of Beauty explores the fragility of truth, the elusiveness of the past, and the transcendent power of love.

Virginia Seton lives in rainy, seedy New Orleans, working as a researcher for a historical novelist with a 'strip-mined' imagination. On a brief trip back to New Zealand for her sister's wedding, Virginia is drawn into the family secrets, lies and tensions of both the past and the present.

  • Published: 3 October 2002
  • ISBN: 9780143018414
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 312
  • RRP: $24.95

About the author

Paula Morris

Paula Morris, of Ngati Wai and English descent, was born in Auckland. Her first novel, Queen of Beauty (2002), won the NZSA Hubert Church Best First Book of Fiction at the 2003 Montana Book Awards and the Adam Foundation Prize. She has published three other novels, Hibiscus Coast (2005), Trendy But Casual (2007) and Rangatira (2011), which was the winner of the Fiction Award at the 2012 New Zealand Post Book Awards and the Nga Kupu Ora Maori Book Awards. She has also published the short-story collection Forbidden Cities (2008), edited The Penguin Book of Contemporary New Zealand Short Stories (2009) and has published three young adult novels in the United States.

Paula holds degrees from four universities, including the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She has worked in London and New York, first as a publicist and marketing executive in the record business, and later as a branding consultant and advertising copywriter. Since 2003 she has taught creative writing at universities in the US, the UK and currently at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.

Also by Paula Morris

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Praise for Queen of Beauty

A stunning debut novel … Queen of Beauty had me mesmerised from the first words … a masterful work.

Penny Bieder, New Zealand Herald

Local debut of the year … a warm, unsentimental portrait of a family in all its confusion and conflicting stories.

New Zealand Listener

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