The Lost Taonga

Edmund Bohan



Their Taonga: Ngai Tahu’s treasure. Everybody wants it. When it is stolen, the ancestors start wreaking havoc. The curse destroys lives. Boats are overturned, babies die at birth, throats are slit. It must be returned to appease the ancestors.

It has drawn the author Countess Margarita Szechnyi and Boyland the Collector – the Polish revolutionary known throughout Europe as the ‘Angel of Death’ – together into a web of murder, intrigue, love and deceit.

Inspector Patrick O’Rorke is drawn into the case, along with his good friends Colonel Henry Jamieson and Henare Greaves as they attempt to return the Taonga to its rightful place.

Starting in the secret caves of Murihiku in 1883, then travelling to South America, on to London – where Dr Julius von Haast’s New Zealand Court at Kensington’s Colonial and Indian Exhibition of 1886 is the talk of the town – then over to Greece, this book keeps the traveller intrigued right through to its gripping climax.

This is the sixth in Edmund Bohan’s absorbing series of O’Rorke novels.

About the Author

An accomplished biographer and novelist, Edmund Bohan was a finalist in the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 1995 and again in 1999. He has published eight other historical novels including The Opawa Affair, The Dancing Man, The Matter of Parihaka, The Irish Yankee and A Present for the Czar. The Lost Taonga is the sixth in the O’Rorke series and is followed by A Time for Vengeance, also available on this website.

An honours graduate from the University of Canterbury, Bohan has 18 published titles and has also written and published historical non-fiction, given radio talks, written short stories and numerous articles. For 25 years he was one of New Zealand’s most successful singers in Britain. 

Edmund Bohan lives in Christchurch.

Look Inside


ISBN:  978-0-9941304-6-4

Pages: 200

Dimensions: 234 x 152mm

Format: Limp

Weight: 0.4kg

Published: May 2017


Long-listed for the 2018 Ngaio Marsh Awards

“Historical crime novels aren’t usually this fun or snappy, but Bohan deftly avoids all the common traps and delivers a concise story with a heap of finesse… a great sense of the time, fascinating hero, good back story, and interesting look at past insensitivities.”

Published Ngaio Marsh Awards Judges’ comments

“Bohan is known in his native land as an accomplished biographer and novelist …having published a range of historical non-fiction as well. Needless to say in both these novels, the historical aspects are delivered in a comprehensive manner, delivering something that feels very real, and accurate without being too bogged down. … The plots are great. … Definitely a series for fans of historical mysteries, these are well written, well-researched and very well balanced between the detail and pace.”

– Karen Chisholm, AustCrimefiction