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A masterly historic novel about a fleet of English abolitionists, their ne'er-do-well neighbours and a fateful utopian experiment. They say their devil is white...

It is 1792 and a group of English gentlemen is recruiting settlers for a new world. Anti-slavers, they foresee the shining vision of a free colony in Africa where all races and classes can live together in harmony.

More than a hundred men, women and children set sail from London bound for Muranda, an island off the west coat of Africa. To lead them, they have Sir George Whitcroft; to sail their ship, the gallant Captain Coupland; Dr Owen to treat their ills; the Reverend Tolchard to guide their spiritual lives; and Caspar Jeavons, a young aristocratic poet, to record their exploits.

When they land, Muranda seems a paradise. Fruit hangs from the trees, the waters swarm with fish, the local king is friendly. Some begin to work. Others prefer to laze and swim, to drink and dance at night. But then the tropical rains begin and beat relentlessly down, fever strikes arbitrarily, and violence reveals itself in this brave new world...

Reviews

Historical fiction at its most immersive

Emma Hagestadt, Independent

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780099572688

    November 15, 2014

    Vintage

    304 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

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    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781448129409

    February 21, 2013

    Vintage Digital

    304 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
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    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

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The Pardon Of St Anne
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Four Last Things
Leporello
The Contract
The India House

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