Next day she accepts an invitation to go with them to Seven's parents' house in Mangonui. Soon he and she are living together in a little shack on the beach. She returns to work in Melbourne, but after a month with no word from him she phones and invites him to visit. He comes, moves in with her, and within a year they are married. At the end of the book, described as "an unlikely love story", they have three sons and are living in her parental home in Boston.
The book focuses on the 15 years she spent in the Pacific region, and on the interaction of cultures. What makes it puzzling, however, is its impersonality: the lack of detail about the central relationship, and the lack of a strong sense of the Maori husband. He is described, but not realised.
We are told often that he is 6ft 2in, strongly built, with long, thick black hair; that he is attractive to women, tranquil, unworried, "cool", and mostly silent. But he is seldom represented speaking or in action.
I kept thinking of Henry James's injunction, "Dramatise! This is a response I find it impossible to imagine any Maori making, except tongue-in-cheek.
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Is the author inventing dialogue to sustain a thesis? Honest, forthright self-examination engenders a well-wrought sense of shared destiny. Email address:.
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True Crime. Profession: Author. Event Coordinator. There, he was set up with a house, a garden and a collection of animals including horses, sheep, turkeys, cats and a monkey.
Come on shore and we will kill and eat you all: An Unlikely Love Story by Christina Thompson
A few years later, though, Omai succumbed to a fever, all but one of his animals also having died, even the monkey, which was killed falling out of a coconut palm. She wonders sometimes if he gets homesick.
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Like the one about how injustices of the past have been addressed, or that, unlike Australia, New Zealand is not racist. A difficulty with explorer stories, however, is that the voice of the explored is usually missing, and this is certainly the case here.