Moonlight and the Pearler’s Daughter
Picked as one of Stylist magazine’s ‘Fiction Books You Can’t Miss in 2022’
‘Tense and vividly atmospheric, with a determined, independent heroine intent on the truth . . . beautifully written, unflinching and brimming with adventure’ – Jennifer Saint, bestselling author of Ariadne
‘A stunning debut . . . paints a memorable picture of ambition, sacrifice and corruption while exploring personal loss as driving force’ – Charmaine Wilkerson, author of Black Cake
Fortune favours the brave in Lizzie Pook’s mesmerising debut novel, Moonlight and the Pearler’s Daughter
1886, BANNIN BAY, AUSTRALIA.
The Brightwell family has sailed from England to make their new home in Western Australia. Ten-year-old Eliza knows little of what awaits them on these shores beyond shining pearls and shells like soup plates – the things her father has promised will make their fortune.
Ten years later and Charles Brightwell, now the bay’s most prolific pearler, goes missing from his ship while out at sea. Whispers from the townsfolk suggest mutiny and murder, but headstrong Eliza, convinced there is more to the story, refuses to believe her father is dead, and it falls to her to ask the questions no one else dares consider.
But in a town teeming with corruption, prejudice and blackmail, Eliza soon learns that the truth can cost more than pearls, and she must decide just how much she is willing to pay – and how far she is willing to go – to find it . . .
‘Gritty, lyrical, breath-taking. I couldn’t put it down’ – Fiona Valpy, author of The Dressmaker’s Gift
‘Adventure, feminist heroine, crocodiles and jellyfish, dangerous men, secrets, grief love and hope… It’s not just good, it’s important. Lizzie shines a light on a dark part of British history with grace, skill, sensitivity and honesty. I LOVED IT – Nikki May, author of Wahala
Immersive storytelling, a rollicking mystery and a take-no-prisoners heroine * Stylist Magazine * Moonlight and the Pearler's Daughter is a gorgeous debut. Both a breathtaking adventure story and a moving testimony to the lengths we go to for the people we love, it swept me away from the first page . . . A gleaming achievement -- Emma Stonex, bestselling author of The Lamplighters Tense and vividly atmospheric, with a determined, independent heroine intent on the truth. It's beautifully written, unflinching and brimming with adventure. I loved the journey to a world I knew nothing about - it's gloriously transporting -- Jennifer Saint, bestselling author of Ariadne A compelling, atmospheric mystery set in western Australia in the late 19th century. Brilliantly manages to recognise the details of the time, including the injustices of colonialism and the pearling industry, alongside a rollicking adventure. A sure fire hit -- Kate Sawyer, Costa shortlisted author of The Stranding A stunning debut. From the very first line, this novel drew me fully into its gritty yet captivating world . . . I will never look at a string of pearls in quite the same way -- Charmaine Wilkerson, author of Black Cake I loved it: a gritty plot, exquisite prose, and a vivid evocation of a dangerous time and place. Wonderfully researched and realised -- Rosie Andrews, author of The Leviathan Gritty, lyrical, breathtaking. I couldn't put it down, drawn in by its vivid characters and wealth of historical detail -- Fiona Valpy, author of The Dressmaker's Gift This story of a daughter searching for her father in 19th century Bannin Bay is exquisite. You can feel the swell of the sea and smell the fish guts. Teeming with atmosphere and a drama that keeps you turning the pages . . . I loved it -- Julie Owen Moylan, author of That Green Eyed Girl The exquisite prose tugged me in and held me in the eye of the storm, my fingers tightly crossed for Eliza. It's not just good, it's important. Lizzie shines a light on a dark part of British history with grace, skill, sensitivity and honesty. I LOVED IT -- Nikki May, author of Wahala This story is a voyage I won't forget readily. Days after reading, I still feel the thrum of the ocean beneath my feet. Phenomenal -- Saara El-Arifi, author of The Final Strife I devoured Moonlight and the Pearler's Daughter . . . Gorgeous, lyrical writing that brings the stifling heat and brutal landscape of North-Western Australia to life, with a courageous heroine in Eliza whose quest I was thoroughly invested in. Incredible! -- Amy McCulloch, author of Breathless A stunning debut. Lizzie's gloriously descriptive and vivid prose envelops us in 19th century Western Australia as if it were yesterday. A moving debut with a truly relatable protagonist -- Laura Price, author of Single Bald Female Eerie and atmospheric with a steadily building sense of mystery and intrigue. I loved all the strands and how they connected in an unexpected and glorious way as the story crescendoed to the climax. Superb storytelling -- Melissa Fu, author of Peach Blossom Spring A luscious, mysterious, adventure novel set in the halcyon days of Australia's lucrative pearl industry in the late 1800's . . . Pook spins an expert tale of corruption, fate and family in this dazzling debut -- Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of The Good Left Undone Moonlight and the Pearler's Daughter is a gift for anyone who likes their historical fiction impeccably researched, beautifully written and with an amazing sense of place. In Bannin Bay, Lizzie Pook has created a richly imagined world so fully realised in all its unflinching glory that from the opening pages I was transported . . . I loved this pacy and compelling read and can't wait to see what Lizzie does next -- Lianne Dillsworth, author of The Theatre of Marvels A transporting and thought provoking novel. The story is as lustrous as a pearl, but just like a pearl, there is real grit at its heart -- Polly Crosby, author of The Unravelling Atmospheric, fascinating, and beautiful, a fantastic story with unexpected twists and turns, and vivid characters that seared their way into my heart like a noon sun on a blisteringly hot day . . . Magnificent -- Liz Hyder, author of The Gifts
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