- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: HQ Fiction - AU (19 November 2018)
- ISBN-10: 1489263489
- ISBN-13: 978-1489263483
- Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 2.6 x 19.7 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 340 g
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 98,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Naturalist's Daughter Paperback – 19 Nov 2018
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About the Author
Tea Cooper is an established author of contemporary and historical fiction. In a past life she was a teacher, journalist and farmer.
These days she haunts museums and indulges her passion for storytelling.
To find out more, visit Tea on her website.
You can also follow Tea on:
Showing 1-8 of 8 reviews
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Of course it is a bit contrived that the girl doing the research turns out to be the heir, but even that matches the historic setting- they liked their stories that way in earlier times. (Think Dickens)
A thoroughly enjoyable read!
‘‘Ask all the questions you can think of and remember the Royal Society motto—Nullius in Verba.’
Take no one’s word for it.’’
In 1908 in Sydney, NSW, Tamsin Alleyn is a young woman working at the Public Library. She’s sent to Wollombi in the Hunter Valley to retrieve an old sketch book which has been gifted to the Library by an elderly woman. The journal is said to belong to Charles Winton, and if it’s genuine, it may be of great significance.
Two stories, separated by a century. Two young women, much more independent than is usual for the times. Two mysteries to be explained. While the reader will quickly understand where the sketchbook came from, the question of ownership needs to be resolved, as does how the sketchbook ended up in Wollombi. For part of the story, the reader has more information than Tamsin. I was engrossed by this stage: I wanted to know how Tamsin would trace the history of the sketchbook. I wanted to find the links between 1808 and 1908: what happened to Rose, and what about the presentation to the Royal Society?
To write more about the story could spoil it. There is more than one mystery in this novel (in both 1808 and 1908) as well as an occasional melodramatic flourish to hold the reader’s attention. I really enjoyed the characters of both Rose and Tamsin, and the way in which Ms Cooper presented this story.
This is the first of Ms Cooper’s novels I have read, but it certainly won’t be the last!
It begins in Australia in 1808 with Charles Winton’s obsession with studying the ornithorhynchus animus, also known as the platypus. His daughter, Rose shares his obsession and together they study and record in words and pictures the movement and habits of this strange animal. One hundred years later a young woman researcher, Tamsin Alleyn, receives documents from The Royal Society in London which hint at journals and records kept by Charles Winton which she believes hold answers to one of the great natural mysteries of the time.
When a message is received at the Mitchell Library bequeathing them a journal belonging to Charles Winton, Tamsin is sent to a small country town to retrieve it. A continuous series of events prevent her taking possession of the journal, which increases her determination to uncover the mystery surrounding this book. The story swings between two centuries and two women, Rose and Tamsin, as each follow their passions – Rose’s to convince the Royal Society her father has not fabricated a hoax and Tamsin’s to pursue possession of the valuable journal and unearth Rose’s story.
This is a book rich with history, intriguing scientific facts, twists and turns and a satisfying ending. The characters are complex and well developed and the surroundings intimately portrayed. I felt as if I was on a quest with the characters to discover all the half-hidden, long forgotten pieces of an enthralling puzzle and couldn’t stop reading until they were all in place. A definite must-read.
Review copy received from Harlequin Australia via Netgalley
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