Jewel Sea


By Kim Kelly

cover image of Jewel Sea

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The true story of a luxury steamship lost in 1912, and its haunting curse, inspire a tale of fatal desire, theft and greed.

The whole of the harbour was touched with gold - the tops of the quiet waves, warehouse roofs, the bulging folds of sails at rest, the tips of seagull wings - giving him one sweeping glimpse of beauty just as he was leaving, a vision of things as they ought always to be just as they were not...

March, 1912. A sultry Indian summer hangs over the west coast of Australia and aboard the luxury steamship SS Koombana, three tales entwine.

Irene Everley longs to leave her first-class fishbowl existence, secretly penning a gossip column as her life spirals out of control into soulless liaisons and alcohol, the long shadow of a tragedy clouding her view.

James Sinclair, an investor on his way to Broome is not the man he says he is but can he be trusted?

Abraham Davis, a wealthy dealer whose scandalous divorce is being dragged through the press, prepares to take the gamble of his life: to purchase an infamous, stolen pearl along the journey north.

Perfectly round, perfectly pink, this pearl comes with a curse and with a warning - destroying all who keep it from returning to the sea.

Praise for Jewel Sea:

'Kelly conveys the rich history of the colourful pearling trade in north-western Australia with gusto and charm....The myth of the cursed jewel has recurred for centuries in storytelling, but Kelly may be the first to have this beautiful and powerful object speak for itself.' - Sydney Morning Herald

'The narrative is breathtaking and the characters are well drawn. I read this book in just two sittings, which is testament to my unwillingness to put the book down.' - Mrs B's Book Reviews

'a many layered, little gem of Australian historical fiction. I could feel, hear and smell the isolated, underpopulated coastal towns of the early 1900's and the cruise liner Koombana in which it is set.' - DM Cameron, acclaimed author of Beneath the Mother Tree.

Jewel Sea