Ocean Bay: A literary take on travel writing

“Ocean Bay” appeared in the New Zealand Society of Authors magazine, NZ Author, Autumn issue, 2017. With thanks to Nadine Rubin Nathan.

The story placed second in the AA Directions Magazine Award for the Best New Travel Writer category of the Cathay Pacific Travel Media Awards 2016. Judge, Steve Braunias, made me blush with his rather lovely comments: ‘Second place was “Ocean Bay.” The writer describes retracing an ancestor’s footsteps in Port Underwood, in Marlborough. It plays with past and present, and brings them together in this very unusual and also very beautiful depiction of place. Again, what a superb piece of writing.’Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4

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Book Review: The Girl Who Stole Stockings (2015) by Elsbeth Hardie

The Girl Who Stole Stockings is a meticulously researched and engaging true story about 12-year-old Colchester-born servant, Susannah Noon, who, in 1811, was convicted of stealing stockings and sentenced to seven years transportation on the convict ship, Friends. The story is two-fold: firstly, Susannah’s changing fortunes and society in early convict New South Wales; and secondly, her marriage to convicted bigamist Samuel Cave and their eventual arrival in a remote whaling community in New Zealand’s Marlborough Sounds in 1838—and being one of only two Pakeha (white) women for miles.

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Keeping great company at the book launch—with cover girl (and my cousin) Sophia, and the author (my aunt), Elsbeth Hardie. Image copyright C. Barron 2015

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Author Interview: Elsbeth Hardie on ‘The Girl Who Stole Stockings’

Keeping great company at the book launch—with cover girl (and my cousin) Sophia, and the author (my aunt), Elsbeth Hardie. Image copyright C. Barron 2015

Keeping great company at the book launch—with cover girl (and my cousin) Sophia, and the author (my aunt), Elsbeth Hardie. Image copyright C. Barron 2015

‘The Girl Who Stole Stockings’ is the true story of Susannah Noon, a 12-year-old girl who, in 1810, was sentenced to transportation to Australia for seven years. It is the fascinating story of the women on the convict ship, Friends, and Susannah’s eventual life on a whaling station in New Zealand’s Marlborough Sounds, before the arrival of the country’s first organised colonists.

This book is a unique portrait of early New Zealand life, written in a readable and compelling style, and with wonderful colour photographs.

Here, I interview author, Elsbeth Hardie, about the joy of unraveling historical mysteries and singing like Barbra Streisand. I am incredibly grateful Elsbeth unraveled this particular mystery, because Elsbeth is my aunt, and Susannah Noon my 4x great grandmother.

Available from leading booksellers in New Zealand and Australia. Online orders at www.friendsconvictship.com RRP NZ$39.99

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