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The Exiles ❰BOOKS❯ ✯ The Exiles Author Christina Baker Kline – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk The author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Orphan Train returns with an ambitious emotionally resonant novel that captures the hardship oppression opportunity and hope of a trio of women’s lives The author of the New York Times bestseller Orphan Train returns with an ambitious emotionally resonant novel that captures the hardship oppression opportunity and hope of a trio of women’s lives in nineteenth century AustraliaSeduced by her employer’s son Evangeline a naïve young governess in early nineteenth century London is discharged when her pregnancy is discovered and sent to the notorious Newgate Prison After months in the fetid overcrowded jail she learns she is sentenced to “the land beyond the seas” Van Diemen’s Land a penal colony in Australia Though uncertain of what awaits Evangeline knows one thing the child she carries will be born on the months long voyage to this distant landDuring the journey on a repurposed slave ship the Medea Evangeline strikes up a friendship with Hazel a girl little older than her former pupils who was sentenced to seven years transport for stealing a silver spoon Canny where Evangeline is guileless Hazel a skilled midwife and herbalist – is soon offering home remedies to both prisoners and sailors in return for a variety of favorsThough Australia has been home to Aboriginal people for than years the British government in the s considers its fledgling colony uninhabited and unsettled and views the natives as an unpleasant nuisance By the time the Medea arrives many of them have been forcibly relocated their land seized by white colonists One of these relocated people is Mathinna the orphaned daughter of the Chief of the Lowreenne tribe who has been adopted by the new governor of Van Diemen’s LandIn this gorgeous novel Christina Baker Kline brilliantly recreates the beginnings of a new society in a beautiful and challenging land telling the story of Australia from a fresh perspective through the experiences of Evangeline Hazel and Mathinna While life in Australia is punishing and often brutally unfair it is also for some an opportunity for redemption for a new way of life for unimagined freedom Told in exuisite detail and incisive prose The Exiles is a story of grace born from hardship the unbreakable bonds of female friendships and the unfettering of legacy.

  • Hardcover
  • 370 pages
  • The Exiles
  • Christina Baker Kline
  • 09 March 2015
  • 9780062356345

About the Author: Christina Baker Kline

A New York Times bestselling author of eight novels including The Exiles Orphan Train and A Piece of the World Christina Baker Kline is published in countries Her novels have received the New England Prize for Fiction the Maine Literary Award and a Barnes Noble Discover Award among other prizes and have been chosen by hundreds of communities universities and schools as “One Book.

10 thoughts on “The Exiles

  1. Christina Kline Christina Kline says:

    I have to add this to my own bookshelf don't you think?

  2. Angela M Angela M says:

    I learned about things I had little or no knowledge of I cried because the story of the women depicted here was heartbreaking and especially so because it tells of things that really happened I was also inspired because the strength of these characters allowed them to rise above their dire circumstances Christina Baker Kline though provides a realistic picture and not all of the characters can escape their fate With her exceptional story telling and meticulous research as well as beautiful writing Kline brings to life two pieces of Australian and British history that occurred under the British colonization in the 1840’s the “convict women” and the horrific treatment of Aborgines the indigenous people of Australia Mathinna a little Aboriginal girl taken in by the wife of the governor of Van Diemen’s Land as if she was a thing losing her home her family and her sense of belonging had my heart from the beginning Evangeline a governess for the children of a wealthy family in London is taken advantage of and falsely accused of stealing Hazel a sixteen year old girl with such a sad life steals a silver spoon and had nothing good to take from her previous life except her knowledge of herbs home remedies and her midwife skills You can learn about the plot in the book descriptions and other reviews that will give of an account of the horrific treatment and conditions for women in a prison in England in 1840 and the awful details of their time on a ship as they are sent to Australia Better yet I recommend you read this book for yourself to get to know these women and girls who have suffered losses are victimized As sad and heartbreaking as it is there is beauty in this story in the connections they make with each other in the bonds formed There is goodness where you least expect to find it in the tenacious but good hearted convict Olive And there is the good Dr Dunne the only one on their side on the ship and later in Australia The ending what to say about it except it’s perfectMy only criticism of the book is the loose end around Mathinna’s story While Kline ties this up in her acknowledgments at the end of the book I felt that Mathinna being the real character deserved her story be told The treatment of the Aborigines was gut wrenchingly reminiscent of the treatment of Native Americans in my own country In spite of my one criticism I have to give this five stars It’s a fantastic piece of historical fiction that had me looking for information about the convict women and the Aborigines I received a copy of this book from William Morrow through Edelweiss

  3. Diane S ☔ Diane S ☔ says:

    Compelling characters vivid descriptions and a wonderful heartbreaking story of courage and bravery The 19th century and women accused of breaking crimes are sentenced to transport headed for Australia One for stealing a spoon one betrayed by a son if the house accused if stealing a ring it really didn't take much We learn about the horrors of Newgate the crude treatment on the ship the details are extraordinary impressive Yet these women in some cases banded together watched out for each other and fought for each other Evangeline Olive and Hazel characters I will long rememberIn an alternate story we have the Franklins John and Jane and boy has my impression of them changed John appointed Governor of Van Diemans Land their treatment of the aborigine and his wife's habit of taking a native child in and trying to civilize the child Mathinna is one such child and we hear her story Link to read about her Her story is heartbreaking but she is dropped from the story before books end which I found disconcerting which is why I didn't give this novel five stars The ending though I loved PerfectThere is one very good man a Doctor who will figure prominently and one very bad man among many others Blended history well told about a time I knew little Once again massive unfairness cruel treatment toward an original people and defenseless women The narrator is Caroline Lee and I found her delivery impressiveARC by Netgalley audio

  4. Lori Lori says:

    “When you cut down a tree you can tell how old it is by the rings inside The rings the sturdier the tree So    I imagine I’m a tree And every moment that mattered to me or person I loved is a ring” She put the flat of her hand on her chest “All of them here Keeping me strong”Again CBK has educated me on a piece of history I was unaware of Britain’s colonization of Australia by the transporting of convicts and the “relocating” of the Aboriginal people I felt every ounce of what these women felt through Klines mesmerizing storytelling My only complaint with the story was that I wish Mathinna’s story had had closure I grew attached to her and hated that her story ended so abruptly Still a wonderful educating novel that I highly recommend 45 stars

  5. Karen Karen says:

    In school I had little interest in history and this is why I have come to love historical fiction as an adult I had no knowledge of this part of AustralianBritish 19th century history and their penal systemThis novel follows two young English women wrongly accused sent by an overly crowded slave ship to Australia’s Newgate prison and also follows an eight year old Aboriginal girl adopted by white colonists just as a “curiosity” and an attempt to “civilize” herThe bravery of these three throughout all the injustices done to them was astoundingThis has been optioned for a tv seriesLoved it

  6. Bkwmlee Bkwmlee says:

    5 starsEven though I’ve had most of Christina Baker Kline’s works including her 2 most famous ones Orphan Train and A Piece of the World on my TBR for uite a while already I’m sorry to say that I have not been able to explore her backlist as I’ve been intending to mostly due to timing issues Despite not having read her previous works yet that didn’t prevent me from jumping on the chance to read an advance copy of her latest historical novel The Exiles scheduled for release at the end of this month I’m so glad I did as this was such a brilliantly written masterpiece and definitely one of my favorites this year I was so invested in the story and characters that I didn’t want to stop reading if I could help it so I ended up finishing this in pretty much one sitting Set in the 1840s the narrative revolves around the experiences of 3 ordinary women — Evangeline Hazel and Mathinna — and the hardships they encounter in a society that doesn’t value them Evangeline Stokes is the young educated daughter of a vicar who takes up a post as governess with a local English family the Whitstones after her father dies only to be seduced by the young master of the house and sent away to prison after a string of false accusations including pregnancy out of wedlock stealing and tempted murder are levied against her After a few months at the Newgate Prison in London Evangeline is eventually sentenced to 14 years at Van Diemen’s Land a penal colony in Australia On the months long journey there via a repurposed slave ship Evangeline befriends a teenager named Hazel a fellow prisoner who was sentenced to 7 years transport for stealing a spoon Despite her young age Hazel has lived a life of suffering— unloved by her alcoholic mother she was forced at a young age to fend for herself and soon becomes adept at pickpocketing in order to survive Hardened to life Hazel soon figures out that the only way to make the transport bearable is to utilize her midwifery and herbalist skills both of which she learned from observing her mother who was a midwife to help others in exchange for favorable treatment In a separate but related story arc we meet Mathinna the eight year old daughter of an Aboriginal chief a native whose people were largely killed off when the British government colonized the Australian territory Mathinna is “adopted” into the household of John Franklin the new governor of Van Diemen’s Land at the whim of his wife Lady Franklin whose outward charity actually masks deeply rooted prejudices toward the natives As such Mathinna’s adoption is actually an “experiment” for Lady Franklin who wants to prove to her friends and acuaintances that “wild savages” of Mathinna’s ilk can be “tamed” into propriety As the 3 narratives intertwine the women‘s lives eventually cross as well but their fates follow markedly different pathsWhen it comes to books a “masterpiece” for me needs to encompass at minimum the following a well crafted story that flows effortlessly beautiful writing well developed and unforgettable characters that I can’t help rooting for emotional resonance nearly flawless execution of story elements and most importantly it needs to either teach me something or make me reflect whether about my own values beliefs or those of the society in which we live In this regard The Exiles with its heart wrenching powerful story so exuisitely told definitely ualifies as a masterpiece Prior to reading this I knew very little about Britain’s colonization of Australia in the nineteenth century and even less about the history of female prisoners being transported overseas and assigned as free labor for mostly wealthy British families in the colony It was gut wrenching to read about how badly these women were treated the brutal conditions they had to endure and worse of all how little their lives were valued in a society where blatant discrimination was the norm Both Evangeline’s and Hazel’s stories were heart wrenching and made me cry but Mathinna’s story absolutely broke my heart – an adult having to deal with racial discrimination is difficult enough but for an innocent child to have to endure what Mathinna did which was essentially to be treated as the Franklin family pet – dressed up and shown off when they wanted some amusement kicked aside and ignored when they grew tired of her it honestly made me sick For me the best historical fiction has the ability to seamlessly weave real historical details into a fictional story in a way that is powerful transformative and opens our eyes to the indignities in society as well as the world we live in More importantly in allowing the voices of the oppressed to be heard it also serves as a much needed reminder that as a society we need to do better Christina Baker Kline is an amazing storyteller – not only was she able to weave an atmospheric and completely absorbing story the strong sense of time and place absolutely made me feel transported into theses characters’ world she also managed to make the story relevant to modern times and what we as a society are currently going through I love stories with strong female characters and this one had many Evangeline Hazel Mathinna Olive Maeve Ruby etc – and also all of the unnamed female prisoners who were also an important part of the story This was an enlightening read albeit also a challenging one given that some parts of it for sure won’t be easy to stomach but overall a necessary read that I absolutely wholeheartedly recommend Received ARC from William Morrow HarperCollins via NetGalley and Edelweiss

  7. Susan Meissner Susan Meissner says:

    Haven’t read a book this fast in a long time Seriously couldn’t put it down Compelling and immersive and expertly researched The backdrop the convict ships that made their way to Australia in the 1800s full of young women and even their little ones was one I knew nothing about Highly recommend and do read the author’s note a the end when you’re finished

  8. Fiona Davis Fiona Davis says:

    The Exiles is truly a work for these times about the abuse of power and how the voices of the less powerful will not be ignored Original meticulously researched and perfectly crafted One of the best books I've read all year

  9. Lisa Vegan Lisa Vegan says:

    I won an Advanced Readers’ edition paperback copy of this book at LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review Thank you to LibraryThing and to the publisher William Morrow I received it promptly than I’d expected on 716 I read it from 719 723 early morning hours Publication date is scheduled to be on 825 It was fun reading this book in advance of publication It was gratifying reading a paper edition of a book given that I’ve been mostly reading e editions during the last several months because of the COVID 19 pandemic I enter to win only books I think I’ll like well enough to assign 5 or 4 stars I’d read this author’s book Orphan Train and gave it 4 12 stars I think I loved this book even than I loved that one and I really liked that one too This book did not disappoint I thoroughly enjoyed this book Beautifully written and brilliantly told I grew attached to many of the characters especially to the three main spirited girlswomen and to one particular man but to many others too The book was a page turner and hard to put down I did stay up into the early morning hours to finish it It was freuently grueling and grim reading but thankfully there was always a lot of heart and also some wonderful diverting clever and profound humor The many tragedies and injustices were painful to read aboutwitness but everything seemed completely realistic and I don’t think there were any gratuitous inclusions There was also a lot that was inspirational and that did effectively counter the often harrowing stories I appreciated the life affirming and hopeful parts Everything felt realistic Heartbreaking and heartwarming I did some research as I read especially because I was curious and when I first started looking up things it was apparent that much about this book is not fiction but non fiction Many of the characters were real people and many places and events in the book really happened The author did an amazing job at making the characters and their circumstances and places come vividly alive I definitely want to learn about the history of Tasmania and prison ships and prisons on both sides of the Atlantic and a lot about the peoples at that time and about the places that appear in the book I want to read about the treatment of the Australian Tasmanian aborigines by the British and others I have read other books and seen films about these subjects but I want to know even than I do especially now that I’ve read this book The three main characters are memorable and how their lives converge is wonderfully done Some of what happened I suppose is predictable but some is definitely not Part way through the book there is a shocking and completely unexpected occurrence I’d never have guessed was coming view spoiler There is the murder of a character I was expecting to be in the entire book hide spoiler

  10. Holly Holly says:

    Well this was a punch to the gut Be prepared to be sad And hopeful And angry And sad some I listened to this on audiobook and I highly recommend that if you like audiobooks there's a lot of accents in the characters of this book and even a little bit of singing and the narrator carries it all off seemingly effortlesslyAs for the plot of the book itself it focuses on several women and what leads them to Australia under less than ideal circumstances to say the least I didn't cry it takes a lot to make me cry reading a book but my jaw dropped in shockhorrorupset several times Like I said be prepared But this was an eye opening look into the real history of Australia which is a country I visited but I am ashamed to say I had almost zero clue about despite having gone to the 'Old Melbourne Gaol' Once you have finished reading this book I highly suggest looking up information on Mathinna a character in the book but a real person you can even see a painting of herIf you read and only liked Orphan Train by this author good news this one is way better Sorry I thought Molly's 'modern day' storyline in that book was kind of boring and this book is completely set in the past which I think helped make it that much stronger

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