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  • Published: 22 August 2023
  • ISBN: 9781776950478
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $40.00
Categories:

Adventures with Emilie

Taking on Te Araroa trail in 138 life-changing days




A mother and daughter's wild journey to rediscover the wonder and restorative power of nature.

“I’m here because I want to test the very limits of my own resilience and reassure myself that no matter what’s happened to me, I’m not ready to lie down and die.”

In 2021, Victoria Bruce quit her corporate job, packed up her life and embarked on Te Araroa trail with her seven-year-old daughter, Emilie. On the 3000-kilometre journey that traverses the length of Aotearoa, the duo faced Covid lockdowns, the harsh elements of New Zealand’s backcountry and even a near-death experience.

A keen tramper, Victoria’s drive to complete the walk was to take time out, create lasting memories with Emilie and reconnect with nature. But it was also a way for her to face her past, and the events that led to her post-traumatic stress disorder.

In this remarkable book, Victoria interweaves her experiences on the trail with reflections on her painful childhood, her time in state care, recovering from addiction and assault, becoming a mother, and escaping everyday life to finally confront her demons.

Powerful and evocative, this is a story about the healing power of nature, our wondrous unique environment, the deep bond between mother and daughter, and survival – both in the wilderness and in life itself.

  • Published: 22 August 2023
  • ISBN: 9781776950478
  • Imprint: Penguin
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $40.00
Categories:

About the author

Victoria Bruce

Victoria Bruce is a keen tramper and writer. Her popular social media and blog accounts Adventures with Emilie documented her and her young daughter’s journey walking New Zealand’s Te Araroa trail.


Victoria is a media and communications advisor with a background in journalism and nursing. She has worked for news agencies in Australia and Southeast Asia, including the Australian Associated Press, Myanmar Times and Fairfax’s Sydney Morning Herald, and held communications roles with a number of public, private and non-profit organisations.


Since completing Te Araroa, Victoria and Emilie continue to escape regularly into the wilderness. Together they love exploring Aotearoa’s wild places, learning about the environment and conservation and doing their part to care for our beautiful country.


Born in New Zealand, Victoria grew up in Australia before returning to her country of birth as an adult. She currently lives in the South Island of New Zealand.


This is her first book.

Awards & recognition

New Zealand Mountain Book Competition

Winner  •  2024  •  New Zealand Mountain Book Narrative Award

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