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The art of breaking ice

Mead, Rachael2023
Books, Manuscripts
In 1960, when the legendary icebreaker Magga Dan set sail for Antarctica, it contained a secret. Hiding on board was Nel Law, wife of expedition leader Phillip Law. She would make history by becoming the first Australian woman to set foot on the icy continent, but it was her art that would change everything. Though a talented artist, Nel has always been defined by her role as 'the explorer's wife', but in the clear expanse of the Southern Ocean, her true self is finally allowed to emerge. Despite misogyny from the all-male crew and increasing resentment from her mercurial husband, Nel's art begins to flourish. Her new friend, a gentle ornithologist, encourages her to explore, but as the ship ploughs on towards Antarctica, rumours swirl, threatening her marriage and the tenuous peace between the controlling Phillip and his crew. In the clear, white light of the south, Nel will be forced to confront the truth of herself and the man to whom she has dedicated her life. This stunning reimagining of Nel Law's life reveals a ground-breaking artist searching for freedom in a world where women's lives were still defined by their husbands.
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