This singular tale connects the famous mutiny on the Bounty in the Pacific Ocean in 1789 to the plight of the Pitcairn Islanders now.
Its conceptual core is how a small chance thing, the taking of a coconut by Fletcher Christian from William Bligh's stores on the ship, had dramatic ramifications that continue today. This story moves from a simple, random event to its complex connections.
The vivid narrative includes mutiny, travel, biography, incest, homosexuality, murder and rape, science and technology, fantasy and selective history.
Sea voyages, most of them extraordinary, drive the narrative forward: the author's own journey to Pitcairn where Fletcher Christian hid to escape punishment; Bligh's navigation to Timor in violent weather, without maps, in a small boat, with scant supplies and starving men; the voyage to England with mutineers in chains and a shipwreck.
Diana Souhami is the author of many widely acclaimed books, including SELKIRK'S ISLAND, which won the 2001 Whitbread Biography Award. She has also written plays for radio and television.
Coconut Chaos (HC Jun 07);
Gertrude and Alice;
Greta and Cecil;
Gluck: Her Biography;
The Trials of Radclyffe Hall;
Mrs Keppel and Her Daughter