ESTHER Jessica North

The extraordinary true story of the First Fleet convict girl who became First Lady of the colon.

16yo Esther Abrahams only just escaped the hangman in London, and on arrival in Sydney Cove she took up with dashing First Lieutenant George Johnston. When Governor Bligh was deposed by the Rum Corps, the by-then Lt. Colonel Johnston briefly became Lieutenant-Governor of NSW and his life companion, Esther, became First Lady of the colony – a remarkable rise for a former convict. They raised a large family on a land grant at what is now Annandale in Sydney and on his death, she successfully managed his businesses to accrue great wealth.