Author(s): John Hall-Jones
Finalist - 2003 Montana NZ Book Awards, History category. The Fjords of Fiordland is a superb blend of some of New Zealand's earliest European history interlaced with stunning pictures of some of the most magnificent scenery on our planet. John Hall-Jones makes full use of this unique combination by skilfully weaving an outstanding collection of over 330 carefully selected sketches, photographs and paintings into the historical text. Many of these illustrations are of historical importance, while others have been added to accentuate the sheer beauty and grandeur of this majestic wilderness of fjords. The text includes the stories of the Maori battles at Spit Island and the "Wild Natives" of Bligh Sound; Captain Cook's survey of Dusky Sound and the Spanish exploration of Doubtful Sound; the sealers who built the first European houses and ship in New Zealand; the gold rush to Preservation Inlet and the marble mine at Caswell Sound. The book contains liberal quotations from the journals of the first Europeans to see the fjords: Captain Cook and his officers and Dr Menzies of Vancouver's expedition; the remarkable records of the sealers Robert Murry and John Boultbee; the scholarly journals of Commander Richards and George Hansard of the Acheron survey and the geologist Sir James Hector; the explorations of W. G. Grave and the delightful pithy phrases of Richard Henry who discovered "a very passable route" to George Sound. The Fjords of Fiordland is published as a sequel and companion volume to the author's highly commended Milford Sound, this time in colour and extending the field to all fourteen fjords.