Much has been written about Captain James Cook, who earned his place in history by circumnavigating the globe and charting previously unmapped coastlines. Little, however, has been written about his wife, Elizabeth.
In Mrs Cook, Marele Day presents a fictionalised account of the life of Elizabeth Cook. Drawing on historical fact combined with imagined emotions and responses, Day portrays Mrs Cook as a bright and strong woman whose devotion to her husband was unwavering, despite his long absences and his undying thirst for adventure.
Elizabeth Cook, left at home for years at a time, raised a family, experiencing birth, death, financial hardship and the fear, eventually realised, of never seeing her husband again.
Day’s powerful prose draws the reader in to Elizabeth’s life, establishing an intimate connection with the Captain’s wife.
Mrs Cook, by Marele Day
Allen & Unwin, 2002, republished 2003