Blog Archives

Adding to the New Zealand story, Helene Wong

Red Dust Over Shanghai: A Shanghai–New Zealand Memoir 1937–1954 Tyl von Randow Eunoia Publishing, $38.00, ISBN 9780994104779 Shanghai has always held an allure for me. Stories about what Westerners got up to in the “Paris of the East” in the

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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction and Review

War games, Ron Palenski

War Blacks: The Extraordinary Story of New Zealand’s World War 1 All Blacks Matt Elliott HarperCollins, $45.00, ISBN 9781775540366 Tom Ellison has a lot to answer for. One of the early All Blacks of erudition and original thought, he wrote a

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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review and Sport

Creating taonga, Trevor Agnew

Maui and other Māori Legends: 8 Classic Tales of Aotearoa Peter Gossage Puffin $40.00, ISBN 9780143309291 What a delight! Maui and other Māori Legends contains eight complete picture books in one handsome hardback, complete with embossed cover, glossary and bookmark

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Posted in Children, Literature and Maori

Not settled yet, Claudia Jardine

Christchurch Ruptures Katie Pickles BWB Texts, $15.00, ISBN 9780908321292 Leaving the Red Zone: Poems from the Canterbury Earthquakes James Norcliffe and Joanna Preston (eds) Clerestory Press, $40.00, ISBN 9780992251758 When the time came to decide what I would do after

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Posted in Non-fiction, Review and Sociology

Imaging war, Stella Ramage

Behind the Twisted Wire: New Zealand Artists in World War I Jennifer Haworth Wily Publications, $50.00, ISBN 9781927167212 Recently, I had the privilege of watching the magnificently restored WWI propaganda film, Battle of the Somme (1916). Shot by official cinematographers

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Posted in Art, Non-fiction, Review and War

Pretence and defence, Melinda Johnston

Bromhead: Scratching a Living Peter Bromhead Penguin Books, $38.00, ISBN 9780143574200 In the Cartoon Archive at the Alexander Turnbull Library there is a marvellous ink caricature captioned “The loveable fun-loving Monsieur Bromhead”. Drawn in 2001 by caricaturist Dinah Priestley (a

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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction and Review

Devouring the monster within, Jon Johansson

Crossing the Floor: The Story of Tariana Turia Helen Leahy Huia, $45.00, ISBN 9781775501633 In Helen Leahy’s Crossing the Floor: The Story of Tariana Turia, a tale is told about Tūtaeporoporo, a taniwha taking the form of a shark. Tūtaeporoporo

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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction and Review

Christchurch circles and cliques, Helen Watson White

Bloomsbury South: The Arts in Christchurch 1933-1953 Peter Simpson Auckland University Press, $70.00, ISBN 9781869408480 When Christchurch poet and printer Denis Glover travelled to Britain in 1941 to serve in the Royal Navy, he left behind one literary circle and

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Posted in Art, Non-fiction and Review

The blind men and the elephant, Chris Else

Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media David Ciccoricco University of Nebraska Press, $55.00, ISBN 9780803248373 I earn a good part of my living by assessing manuscripts. For a fee, I read a text and write a report on it, which, I

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Posted in Non-fiction 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
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