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Walking in the Shadow

“Walking in the Shadow” is beautifully written and gives an incredible insight into the early history of leprosy in New Zealand, and the minds of those who have suffered from leprosy, even after they have been cured.

On a small, wind-blasted island off the east coast of New Zealand a small colony of leprosy sufferers is isolated but not abandoned, left to live out their days in relative peace thanks to the charity of the townspeople and the compassion of the local doctor and matron of the hospital.  Jimmy Kokupe is a miracle: he’s been cured. But he still carries the stigma, which makes life back on the mainland dangerous and lonely. To find a refuge, he has returned to the camp to care for his friend, fellow patient old Will, and disturbed young Charley. Healed of his physical ailments and dreaming of the girl he once planned to follow to a new life in Australia, Jimmy meets ‘the lady’, the island caretaker’s beautiful but troubled wife who brings their food. Can she help Jimmy forget his difficult past and overcome his own prejudices towards his mixed parentage, and find the courage to risk living in freedom?