Kirsty Powell grew up in the North Wairarapa in an isolated rural community east of Eketahuna. She now lives in rural South Auckland and splits her time between farming, writing and contracting as an Occupational Health Physiotherapist to local industries. She has also studied psychology, history, philosophy and completed a Master of Creative Writing. She has travelled by motorbike on several continents and by bicycle across Europe.
The Strength of Eggshells combines many of her loves. She particularly enjoyed researching the history of the re- turned soldier settlement blocks in the Mangapurua Valley and meeting the descendants and one of the original settlers who is now in her nineties and appears in the novel as herself - a teenage girl in the 1940s.
"The powerful tug of history, the search for identity, an unresolved present, dark ghosts in the past... This is a marvellous New Zealand novel."
Kirsty's book The Strength of Eggshells tells the stories of three generations of women, including Kate Whyte, adopted at birth from a young woman who was a patient at the former Kingseat psychiatric hospital. Kirsty Powell talks to Lynn Freeman about their experiences.
"What a remarkable first novel."
"A wonderful story, at times confronting, but very real and gritty."
Marcus Hobson / NZ Booklovers