Elizabeth and ElizabethSue Williams
3 March 2022
Published by Allen & Unwin
‘I’ve waited for this moment so long, dreamed of it, prepared for it, I can barely believe it’s finally here. But it is. And it is nothing like I expected.’
There was a short time in Australia’s European history when two women wielded extraordinary power and influence behind the scenes of the fledgling colony.
One was Elizabeth Macquarie, the wife of the new governor Lachlan Macquarie, nudging him towards social reform and magnificent buildings and town planning. The other was Elizabeth Macarthur, credited with creating Australia’s wool industry and married to John Macarthur, a dangerous enemy of the establishment.
These women came from strikingly different backgrounds with husbands who held sharply conflicting views. They should have been bitter foes. Elizabeth & Elizabeth is about two courageous women thrown together in impossible times.
Borne out of an overriding admiration for the women of early colonial Australian history, Sue Williams has written a novel of enduring fascination.
‘An extraordinary story of female leadership at a time when such a quality was frowned on, and female friendship forged against the odds. Sue Williams’ Elizabeth & Elizabeth brings us a nuanced and vivid portrait of the early days of colonisation. More importantly, it delivers a fascinating look into the relationship between two remarkable women.’ – Meg Keneally, bestselling author of The Wreck