The Captive Wife

The Captive Wife When Betty Guard steps ashore in Sydney in she meets with a heroine s welcome Her survival during a four month kidnapping ordeal amongst Taranaki Maori is hailed as nothing short of a miracle B

  • Title: The Captive Wife
  • Author: Fiona Kidman
  • ISBN: 9781869416867
  • Page: 334
  • Format: Paperback
  • When Betty Guard steps ashore in Sydney, in 1834, she meets with a heroine s welcome Her survival during a four month kidnapping ordeal amongst Taranaki Maori is hailed as nothing short of a miracle But questions about what really happened slowly surface within the elite governing circles of the raw new town of Sydney Jacky Guard, ex convict turned whaler, had taken BetWhen Betty Guard steps ashore in Sydney, in 1834, she meets with a heroine s welcome Her survival during a four month kidnapping ordeal amongst Taranaki Maori is hailed as nothing short of a miracle But questions about what really happened slowly surface within the elite governing circles of the raw new town of Sydney Jacky Guard, ex convict turned whaler, had taken Betty as his wife to his New Zealand whaling station when she was fourteen After several years and two children, the family is returning from a visit to Sydney when their barque is wrecked near Mount Taranaki A battle with local Maori follows, and Betty and her children are captured Her husband goes to seek a ransom, but instead England engages in its first armed conflict with New Zealand Maori when he is persuaded to return with two naval ships After her violent rescue, Betty s life amongst the tribe comes under intense scrutiny Based on real events, this is the compelling story of a marriage, of love and duty, and the quest for freedom in a pioneering age.

    790 Comment

    • Claire McAlpine says:

      The Captive Wife is set in the 1830's, spanning ten years from 1832 -1843 and is based around the lives of two women, one the young Betty Guard and the other her school teacher Adeline Malcolm, whom Betty takes as her confidant, to share what exactly happened to her and her children, when they were taken captive on the shores of New Zealand, during one of their frequent visits.In narrating her story, we come to know the circumstances of these women and their men and how they came to be living in [...]

    • Olivermagnus says:

      The Captive Wife is set in the 1830's, and spans ten years (1832 -1843). It tells the story of Betty Guard, who at fourteen, marries a former convict turned whaler. He takes Betty as his wife and they head to a New Zealand whaling station. After several years, and two children, the family decides to return to Australia but along the way their ship is wrecked. After a battle with one of the Maori tribes, Betty and two of her children are kidnapped. Betty decides to take school teacher, Adeline Ma [...]

    • jeniwren says:

      When Betty Guard steps ashore in Sydney, in 1834, she meets with a heroine's welcome. Her survival during a four-month kidnapping ordeal amongst Taranaki Maori is hailed as nothing short of a miracle. But questions about what really happened surface within the elite governing circles of the raw new town of Sydney.Jacky Guard, ex-convict turned whaler, had taken Betty as his wife to his New Zealand whaling station when she was fourteen. After several years and two children, the family is returnin [...]

    • Kate says:

      I made comment to a fellow book club member that this really was "not my cup of tea" but I started it thinking at that at least was somethingI was quickly captivated (pun intended)and unable to put it down. Set during the 1820/30's between Sydney Australia and various settlements along the West coast of New Zealand. It depicts the conflict between indigenous New Zealand Maori, the Kings representatives from England, whalers, sailors, convicts and women. All are trying to make something out of th [...]

    • Rebecca says:

      Hmmmmmis book didn't make an impression on me t i tried soo hard to finish it.i don't regret reding it! For the ones that like family booksi recommand this one! P.S I loved the savages(mauri):):):)

    • Jennifer says:

      When I picked this book up at the library, I didn't know it was based on a true story. I am glad I realized it before I started reading, as it put an entirely different perspective on what I was reading. The story begins in Australia. John Guard is a former convict who has served his time and is busy establishing himself as a whaler and trader. He contracts to marry Betty, a 14 year old girl who is the niece of his housekeeper and cook. He takes her off to New Zealand with him, where he has esta [...]

    • Jessica says:

      This was an interesting novel. It is based on real events and the story is told through multiple characters perspectives using journal entries/ letters and various recounts and conversations. I didn't love this book, but the story carried me along quickly and I have to admit it was a fascinating voyage. It felt like and important story- one that needed to be told. I started the book feeling a great deal of mistrust towards one particular character who was clearly concealing the truth. This intri [...]

    • Gary says:

      "I’m not going to tell you the story the way it happened. I’m going to tell it the way I remember it." That's how the protagonist in Charles Dickens book Great Expectations explains how he's going to tell the story. And this is the method Ms. Kidman uses to tell this remarkable story. Although a work of fiction, the basic story is factual. What really sets this book apart is the way the story is revealed through the musings, letters, etc. of the main characters. It's not a clear case of good [...]

    • Stephen says:

      Funny thing; a couple of days after I started reading this I began wondering if this was fiction or historical fiction. Then that very day I walked into Te Papa where there was a display on John and Betty Guard and their family, including the comb and the green meat dish which both figure prominently in the book. That answers that question. This book felt like a really honest account of what life was like in New Zealand in the 1830s. I found the jumping between narrators detracted from the story [...]

    • Kristine says:

      Fictional novel told through various characters' points of view in letters, journals, and dialogue which is based on a real event of the 19th century involving the kidnapping of a young Australian wife and her children by New Zealand Maori. Nearly all of the novel follows the life of the young woman and her ex-convict whaler husband before and after (but little during) the kidnapping. I didn't find most of the characters to be very well-developed and thought the main device of revealing the stor [...]

    • Atl Goddess says:

      I didn't realize that this was based on a real story. I knew the author was noted for meticulous research. I wish there was a note by the author at the end citing some of her sources. I guess she did this somewhat in her thanks at the end. This makes me appreciate this story more and revise my rating up a star. I have taken care of girls her age pregnant. While I don't recommend this lifestyle for any girl, some of them have this strong character that Bety exhibited. Heartbreaking story of a str [...]

    • Bachyboy says:

      Really enjoyable! Betty Guard, the heroine based on real life, is kidnapped by Taranaki Maori for four months. She is a true battler and the book gives a wonderful insight into 1830's New Zealand. Jacky Guard, ex-convict turned whaler is a strong, awkward character who evokes some pity in spite of his stance at times.

    • Marzia says:

      Great book! Didn't think I'd enjoy it as much as I did. Based on a true story, this was an interesting, well-written book with a good mixture of history, and a tad of romance. It certainly added to me knowledge of the social mores of 19th century Australia and in particular, New Zealand. I recommend it.

    • melissa says:

      Quite simply the best book I've read in the last year. Based on a real Sydney whaler who married his 14-year old maid and took her to New Zealand - where she was kidnapped by a Maori tribe - this story is utterly gripping. Fiona Kidman is one of NZ's grande dames of letters. It's a real shame you cannot find this book in a single Australian bookstore.

    • Ali says:

      An interesting read about a specific time in New Zealand history. I was fascinated to read that it was based on a true story of the kidnapping by a Maori chief and the subsequent rescue of Betty Guard and her two children in 1834.

    • Gia says:

      I enjoyed this story but also felt a bit sensitive towards it, being a Maori myself. When I felt the carnage was coming, I was hesitant to read on and finish it. Even though the details were not graphic as I've read in other books, it still pierces the heart a bit.

    • Hennie B says:

      Great read, Betty was so young when she married John Guard. Imagine being married at 14. Gruesome descriptions made me cringe. But well written.

    • Sarah says:

      A good read and a good perspective on life at that time.

    • Millie says:

      I read it in one day that say enough was a goodread!

    • Taihape Library says:

      I really liked this one, and when I saw Betty Guard's family memorabilia in Te papa it made the story really -real!

    • Deb says:

      A captivating read

    • Jan says:

      Betty Guard'story was fascinating (and based on a real story). Fiona Kidman is meticulous with her research - I really enjoy her writing.

    • Ali says:

      A little NZ history

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