Book VIII of The Great South Land Saga.  Drifting helplessly on a vast and empty sea is a longboat carrying fourteen survivors from the  Sea Queen, which burnt and sank en route from Auckland to Sydney. For twelve days the castaways are at the mercy of the sea; and in that time of terror, exposure and starvation the veneer of their normal lives is shed to reveal lust, hate and fears of their inner selves.  When at last the survivors are cast up on the shore of the North Coast, they find a wild land of tall timber and dense scrub where the cedar getters toil, where the hardy settlers wrest a living from the rich soil and the first schooners glide up the vine-hung rivers.