'Fiji: A Novel'
Author: Lance and James Morcan
Genre: Historical Adventure
Fiji is a spellbinding novel of adventure, cultural misunderstandings, religious conflict and sexual tension set in one of the most exotic and isolated places on earth.
As the pharaohs of ancient Egypt build their mighty pyramids, and Chinese civilization evolves under the Shang Dynasty, adventurous seafarers from South East Asia begin to settle the far-flung islands of the South Pacific. The exotic archipelago of Fiji is one of the last island groups to be discovered and will remain hidden from the outside world for many centuries to come.
By the mid-1800's, Fiji has become a melting pot of cannibals, warring native tribes, sailors, traders, prostitutes, escaped convicts and all manner of foreign undesirables. It's in this hostile environment an innocent young Englishwoman and a worldly American adventurer find themselves.
Susannah Drake, a missionary, questions her calling to spread God's Word as she's torn between her spiritual and sexual selves. As her forbidden desires intensify, she turns to the scriptures and prayer to quash the sinful thoughts - without success.
Nathan Johnson arrives to trade muskets to the Fijians and immediately finds himself at odds with Susannah. She despises him for introducing the white man's weapons to the very people she is trying to convert and he pities her for her naivety. Despite their differences, there's an undeniable chemistry between them.
When their lives are suddenly endangered by marauding cannibals, Susannah and Nathan are forced to rely on each other for their very survival.
New Zealand novelist, screenwriter and film producer Lance Morcan is a prolific writer with variouspublished books and released movies to his credit. His books include the historical adventure Fiji: A Novel and the spy thriller series The Orphan Trilogy (The Ninth Orphan, The Orphan Factory, The Orphan Uprising). All four novels were co-written with his son James Morcan and published by Sterling Gate Books. Their production company, Morcan Motion Pictures, is developing The Ninth Orphan and Fiji into feature films.
A former journalist and newspaper editor, Lance divides his time these days between novel writing, film producing and screenwriting. Numerous screenplays he has written are in active development as movies and as a producer his feature films have screened at cinemas in Australia, Italy and Cannes.
Lance is currently perfecting his solo-written New Zealand - an epic adventure novel covering 500 years of South Pacific and Polynesian history. Including research, writing (and life's distractions!), this novel has been over a decade in the making.
Question & Answers follow:
1. Where did the idea come from for Fiji: A Novel?
I have had a long-time love affair with Fiji, having visited ‘The Friendly Isles’ a number of times. I’ve long thought it would be a wonderful setting for a historical novel. Both James and I have a penchant for writing historical novels and screenplays (we are also screenwriters) and so decided to co-write Fiji: A Novel.
2. What genre does your book fall under?
It is an historical adventure which could equally be described as an adventure-romance (as it has a lusty romance) or as an action-adventure (as it has action that befits the violent era and setting).
I’d like to see Josh Hartnett play Nathan, Kate Beckinsale play Susannah Drake and Sam Neill play Drake Senior, Susannah’s father.
4. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
A young American travels to Fiji to trade with the native Fijians, but gets caught up in an inter-tribal war and finds love with an English missionary's daughter.
5. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Our book has already been published courtesy of Sterling Gate Books and is available via Amazon as a trade paperback and as a kindle ebook. Print-only rights will soon be offered to major publishing houses worldwide.
6. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
One year to do the first draft and another two years to nail the final draft.
7. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Michener's Hawaii is probably closest.
8. Who or What inspired you to write this book?
See Answer #1. Plus Michener's Hawaii inspired me personally...I've always felt that Fiji (the place) deserved a Hawaii-type treatment.
9. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
The exotic South Seas setting will appeal to most readers. Female readers seem intrigued by the story's lusty romance. Our two leads are thrown together in violent circumstances, so theirs is a somewhat tumultuous relationship. Male readers seem to resonate with the action sequences and there's plenty of them given. 'The Friendly Isles' were better known as 'The Cannibal Isles' in the 19th Century. For good reason!
IMDb movie site: http://www.imdb.com/company/co0239052/?ref_=fn_al_co_1
My 5 Star Review
The authors intriguing plot kept you focused on the pages as you venture between action filled pages and the romantic nuances in the book.
Starting out as lust filled connections Nathan Johnson and Susannah Drake were the opposites in character from each other but yet the chemistry was undeniable.
Susannah's dreams filled with the young American and what he would do with her. But yet she kept her distance, knowing the arrogant and selfish man would never fit into her life.
Her father Reverend Drake, missionary to the Fiji islands did not condone the interaction and kept them apart as far as he could. But when fights erupted and Susannah was abducted he paid the ultimate price trying to protect his daughter.
It was up to Nathan and the warriors to safe the day. The cunningness of the tribes as they fight against each other for power and riches learning about their own vainess with colorful hairdos trying to outshine each other. Fascinated with their ways and customs as Nathan learn about faithfulness, caring for others and a love for the redhead. This self made man stopped at nothing to enrich himself but at the end turned away from all that for the love of the young woman. Placing his own life on the line for her and the natives he got to know as friends.
Deceitfulness and evil lurking around as they tried to win a war with the Outcasts. Rambuka half brother of Joeli the Ratu of the tribe stopped at nothing to gain the upper hand. Abducting women for his pleasure and killing his own father without regret.
Colorful and descriptive you are part of the lives of the people as this well written and fast paced book captures the attention.
Good and evil the two forces that fight against each other to gain the upper hand, running a mock in the lives of Susannah and Nathan. Interesting characters added to the story line making it a believable, entertaining and well planned plot.