An historical, pastoral, satirical, scientifical romance, with mustelids. A young man out poaching. A beautiful maiden in a mysterious house. A perilous voyage to distant islands. All the ingredients of a highly coloured Victorian romance are played out in the context of the great colonial experiment. Exotic species travelled back to stock the collections of Europe while useful species were dispatched to found new colonies in the antipodes. Walter Allbones really existed. So did his ferrets. From these facts, Fiona Farrell has spun a delicate, satirical fantasy about human folly and the perils attendant on disturbing the subtle balance of nature.