Blog Archives

Poetry and the poem, Michael Hulse

Selected Poems  Jenny Bornholdt Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781776560660 If I begin by saying that Jenny Bornholdt gives the impression of being a very modest person, it’s not because this review is to be an assessment of her character,

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Posted in Literature, Poetry and Review

Stories on stage, Mark Houlahan

The Plays of Bruce Mason: A Survey John Smythe Playmarket and Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781776560554 Here/Now: 8 Plays by Award-Winning New Zealand Playwrights David O’Donnell (ed) Playmarket, $35.00, ISBN 9780908 607594 John Smythe’s survey of the plays of

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Posted in Literature, Plays and Review

An anatomy of neoliberal angst, Hugh Roberts

Neoliberalism and Cultural Transition in New Zealand Literature, 1984-2008  Jennifer Lawn Lexington Books, $95.00, ISBN 9780739177419 The 1984 Labour government’s legacy has been a curious Rorschach test over the years. I can recall talking to my students in classes at

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Posted in Literature, Non-fiction and Review

A late flowering, Peter Russell

Karl Wolfskehl: Three Worlds / Drei Welten: Selected Poems: German and English Friedrich Voit (ed), Andrew Paul Wood (trans) Cold Hub Press, $45.00, ISBN 9780473358679 This book is a triumph: a triumph of the translator’s art, and a triumph in

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Posted in Literature, Poetry and Review

Music boxes and willows, Edmund Bohan

The Song Journey T E Scott Scott Publishing, $37.00, ISBN 9780473328863 Napoleon’s Willow Joan Norlev Taylor RSVP Publishing, $30.00, ISBN 9780987658784 One of the attractions of historical fiction is its infinite variety. For far too long in New Zealand’s curious

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Letters of aroha and respect, Olivia Bennett

The Art of Walking Upright Glenn Colquhoun Steele Roberts, $25.00, ISBN 1877228206 “The art of walking upright here is the art of using both feet”. For many New Zealanders, the very essence of being Kiwi is being part of a

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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review and YA Reviewers

Familiar and strange, Charlotte Graham

Deleted Scenes for Lovers Tracey Slaughter Victoria University Press, $30.00, ISBN 9781776560585 In almost a decade in journalism, I’ve spent a long time sitting in courtrooms. The people whose lives play out in front of a judge seem at first

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Promising softly-spoken wonder, Thom Conroy

The Quiet Spectacular Laurence Fearnley Penguin, $38.00, ISBN 9780143574156 Laurence Fearnley occupies a position somewhere between national treasure and experimental writer. Her depictions of landscapes and her stylistic tendency toward restraint inspire praise, with reviews admiring Fearnley for how markedly

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Drawing pictures in the mind, Barbara Else

Coming Home to Roost Mary-Anne Scott Longacre Press, $20.00, ISBN 9781775538592  The Road to Ratenburg Joy Cowley Gecko Press, $20.00, ISBN 9781776570751 Twice now I’ve been a marker at a regional Lit Quiz where teams of top intermediate age readers

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Posted in Children, Literature and Review

Glory or gory? Caitlin Walker

The Bakehouse Joy Cowley Gecko Press, $20.00, ISBN 9781776570072 Viewed from a distance of seventy-plus years, 1943 was history soup, everything mixed up, and it was difficult to separate reality from what he had read or been told. One event,

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Posted in Literature, Review, YA Reviewers and Young adults
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