Heart of the High Country

Elizabeth Gowans, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-312-36596-7
When 15-year-old Ceci Bowen chooses ""assisted passage'' to New Zealand, she leaves her straitened but loving family in Victorian England with expectations of fulfillment in a land of fabled beauty. What she encounters is rape, excruciating drudgery, a paper marriage, a succession of brutal men and other challenges that do not quench her seeking spirit. In a saga that is reminiscent of The Thorn Birds, though lacking that novel's lyricism, Gowans takes Ceci through a remarkable series of events until, in her 30s, she marries the man who first befriended her in the new land. Her survival is notable because the earlier immigrants brought with them all the old prejudices of class and religionwhich Ceci as a lone woman must contend with. Despite her doubts about recognizing it, love does come to Ceci. Some melodrama does not detract from a vibrant story. (October 20)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-553-27160-7
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