It is 1704 and, in the swamps of Louisiana, France is clinging on to its new colony with less than two hundred men. Into this hostile land comes Elisabeth Savaret, one of twenty-three women sent from Paris to marry men they have never met. With little expectation of happiness, Elisabeth is stunned to find herself falling passionately in love with her husband, infrantryman Jean-Claude Babelon. But Babelon is a dangerous man to love. Witness to Elisabeth's devotion is another of his acolytes, Auguste, a young boy despatched to act as a go-between with the 'redskins'. When both Elisabeth and Auguste find their love challenged by Babelon's duplicity, the consequences are devastating. Longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2010.