Author(s): Karyn Hay
A late 19th century tale of triumph over obsession and humiliation.
It is London 1893, and Frances Woodward is an an adventurous young photographer taking tasteful, yet by Victorian standards, erotic images of her friend Dolly. However the restrictions of her puritanical father and the cruelties of 19th century narcissist, Benedict Hunt torment her. In the wake of a scandal and having meted out a particularly creative form of revenge upon Hunt, Frances flees the stuffy hypocrisy of Victorian London and travels alone to the far-flung colony of New Zealand.
Here she is forced to look beyond the establishment life seemingly pre-ordained for her. Falling in with other artists and non-conformists, and inspired by the revolution in thinking brought about by heroic literary figures and social reformers of the time, Frances forges a new path of her own making.
Karyn Hay is an iconic New Zealand media personality, well-known as as the presenter the 1980s TV music show, Radio With Pictures, a documentary producer, and now a RadioLIVE evening talkback host. Hay is also an award-winning author. Her first book Emerald Budgies, described as ‘a darkly comic tale of disintegration and revenge... Prozac Nation meets Crash!’, won the NZSA Hubert Church Best First Book Award in the Montana New Zealand Book Awards. Hay is a Frank Sargeson Fellow. She lives in West Auckland.