What flows through quite clearly is the knowledge, love and interest Shawver has for old and rare books, and/or manuscripts. That includes his interest in New Zealand.
The culture, customs and history of New Zealand, which gives quite an insight into the country and its native people the Maori. As if that wasn’t enough the author also fills the mind’s eye full of luscious scenery and exotic landscapes.
When I found out the reasoning for Penelope’s self applied nickname the bad feeling turned into a bad taste in my mouth. I think what annoyed me most was the fact Bevan knows why and still uses the nickname Pillow when talking about or to her. It is the equivalent of her calling herself a bike, a mattress or a whore. Surely the realisation of this self-inflicted vocal punishment should be enough to disregard the name?
Bevan struggles to figure out whether or not he can trust his companions.They both seem willing to drop him in it in a heartbeat. One for some antique diaries and the other to protect her family. He isn’t exactly the type of character you warm to, but his tragic past encourages forgiveness.
At times it felt as if the main plot was often overshadowed by the commune sub-plot, perhaps to the detriment of the main story, however Shawver does bring it all together with a tight ending.
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley.