Author(s): MAURICE GEE
This superb new novel from the bestselling Maurice Gee is the story of Ellie. It is a story in five parts, each languishing on a significant period of her life. It ranges from the 1950s when, as a girl, she lived in a YWCA hostel in Lower Hutt, to her twenties where she lives on a commune in Nelson, through to middle age, as she raises a son and becomes a painter. During this time she becomes involved with a series of rather feckless, forgettable men but also, most importantly of all, she becomes a painter of distinction. But her canvasses are haunted by an enigmatic ghostly figure she thinks of as her shadow man, elusive but ever present. Gee's new novel contains elements of his earlier book Loving Ways and also The Burning Boy, in its location in Nelson and Golden Bay. There are strong touches of the New Zealand backdrop - the 1981 Tour, the Nelson artists' scene, whitebaiting on the West Coast, the wildfoods festival, and so on. Above all else, as with every Gee novel, it is eminently readable and beautifully written. ++ Finalist for the Deutz Medal for fiction 2002 ++
Shortlisted for Montana New Zealand Book Awards: Fiction Category 2002.