Friday 23 October 2020

#BlogTour The Exiles by Christina Baker Kline


Today it's a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Exiles by Christina Baker Kline.

About the Author

Christina Baker Kline is the author of seven novels, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Orphan Train. Her essays, articles, and reviews have appeared in the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Money, More, and Psychology Today, among other publications. She lives in New York City and on the coast of Maine.

Follow @bakerkline on Twitter, on Amazon, on Goodreads, Visit, Buy The Exiles

About the book

London, 1840. Evangeline, pregnant and falsely accused of stealing, has languished in Newgate prison for months. Ahead lies the journey to Australia on a prison ship. On board, Evangeline befriends Hazel, sentenced to seven years’ transport for theft. Soon Hazel’s path will cross with an orphaned indigenous girl. Mathinna is ‘adopted’ by the new governor of Tasmania where the family treat her more like a curiosity than a child.

Amid hardships and cruelties, new life will take root in stolen soil, friendships will define lives, and some will find their place in a new society in the land beyond the seas.


It's a very effective way of disposing of a problem - accusing them of a crime and having them shipped off across the other side of the globe. Evangeline finds herself at the wrong end of the stick, after being lured into a false romantic relationship. A gentleman who will say or do anything to get what he wants.

Unfortunately those choices lead to her ending up on a transport as a prisoner on the way to Australia. Pregnant and abandoned, but determined to survive for herself and her child. She connects with other women in similar situations. Their bonds become threads of support and survival.

You often hear jokes about the how the country of Australia or rather the non-indigenous descendants are for the greater majority ex-convicts. Hoards of men, women and children who were shipped off to the other side of the world, sometimes for merely stealing some food, but also more serious crimes such as murder.

The joking glosses over the inhumanity, the violence and the inequality of crime vs punishment. It was an easy way to provide the upper echelon with servants, labour and a way to establish a multiple tier society, such as the British were used to. Colonialism has a lot to answer for.

Of course that is entirely without taking the indigenous people into account. Their fate is often forgotten, perhaps because the fate of the Native Americans tends to be better known. The story of Mathinna is just an example that only hints at the horrors experienced by the Australian indigenous people.

Baker Kline writes a compelling story, historical fiction mixed with fact, which is always a bit of an eye-opener. It's a story of betrayal, violence and most of all of perseverance. Perhaps also that ou of bad can sometimes after many years come something good.

Buy The Exiles at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Allison and Busby; Publication Date 22nd October 2020 | Demy Format HB | £16.99. Buy at Amazon com.

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