A friendship forged across the battlelines of Gallipoli leads a young soldier to question all he knows about loyalty, and about faith.
It will lead him to court martial and brutal punishment; it will sustain him through the horrors of the Western Front.
And it will see him home again, a different man from the one who went to war.
Stephen Daisley was born in 1955 and grew up in the North Island of New Zealand. He has worked on sheep and cattle stations, on oil and gas construction sites and as a truck driver, among many other jobs. Stephen’s first novel, Traitor, won the 2011 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Fiction. He lives in Western Australia with his wife and five children.
‘One of the finest debut novels I have read. Indeed it’s one of the best novels I have read in recent years…It’s about so much more than war: love, friendship, loyalty, honour, mercy, spirituality, multiculturalism, class.’ Australian
‘Daisley’s prose possesses a shimmering, allusive beauty reminiscent of John McGahern. Sequences such as the stunning description of the ageing David’s journey out into a rainy morning to supervise the lambing lend the novel an almost sacred quality.’ Weekend Australian
‘Daisley’s Traitor is suffused with love, beauty and loneliness. The creation and development of the character of David Monroe is masterful, not least because he is a man of so few words.’ Australian Literary Review
‘Terrific debut from NZ writer based in Australia. One soldier’s act of courageous compassion at Gallipoli sees him branded a traitor. But who betrayed whom? Exquisitely crafted and beautifully written.’ Sunday Star Times