'[the author] has created a story that makes history come alive and takes us on an emotional journey into the founding of the Akaroa settlement in what is now known as Banks Peninsula ... The book is well written and presented. I recommend it to anyone interested in an intriguing insight into the formation of our nation.'
'From the sure hand of historian Joan Norlev Taylor comes the tricky manoeuvre of binding fact and fiction into a convincing historical novel. ... The reader can be impressed by the perfect chronology of the events, but layering on a cast of factual and fictitious characters relies on impeccable social research and imagination. Taylor has managed this seamlessly so the reader would likely not know who and how much of a character is real. ... this is a feverishly colourful story. It contains the requisites - love, sex, adventure and politics.'
'This is a novel which shows meticulous research, enabling an accurate retelling of the events which took place in Akaroa in the 1840s. The setting, the characters and the events are engagingly portrayed. You really get a sense of the complexity of the issues with agendas involving land and law. The Maori perspective is clearly stated, as is the spirituality of the native New Zealanders. Bishop Pompellier is accurately shown as a complex man with a deep understanding of the need for diplomacy and concession.'