||For Their Country's
by Rebecca Bryn
An historical trilogy.
On Different Shores
A young poacher is found guilty of killing Lord Northampton's gamekeeper and is transported to Van Diemen's Land for life, leaving behind the common-law wife he loves. Pregnant and penniless, she faces the appalling lack of rights for women in Victorian England and is forced to make hard choices. While he suffers the deprivations of a brutal life in chains, she is determined her child will know its father; she embarks on a dangerous endeavour to follow her lover across the globe. Will the cost of her actions prove too high, for her and for all those she loves? (Inspired by family history and real events.)
Jem, en-route to exile in Van Diemen's Land, on a convict ship,has left behind, Ella, the girl he loves. As Jem plans mutiny, in an attempt to return home, Ella is using the only currency she has, her body, to earn the fare to follow him. Can Jem learn to love again? Can Ella escape her loveless marriage, or will her midsummer baby tie her to England forever? Is their love not meant to be?
On Common Ground
Concluding the tale of Jem and Ella's ill-fated love: both have been transported as convicts to Van Diemen's Land. Ella and Jem's baby son, William, is dying from malnutrition in the nursery of the female factory at Launceston, where she is imprisoned. In order to save his life, she has put herself forward for marriage, despite already having a legal husband, Harry, and a son, Matthew, in England. Her new 'husband' has gold fever and is taking her and William over Australia's Bue Mountains in search of his fortune. Harry, in England, doubts Matthew is his son, and, desperate for a legal, blood heir, determines to hear the truth of the matter from Ella's own lips and sets out to find her. Jem, meanwhile, still a prisoner in Impression Bay, on Van Diemen's Land's convict peninsula, believes Ella and William are in England. Letters from home suggest she's with Harry, and is happy, but can Jem believe that after what Harry has put her through in the past? Unable to rest until he knows she's safe and happy, Jem determines on a further escape attempt to reach England and Ella. Will their paths ever cross again, or is their love not meant to be?