Blog Archives

What’s a New Zealand novel? Sue Esterman

Enemy Camp 
David Hill
Puffin, $20.00, ISBN 9780143309123

Lullaby
Bernard Beckett
Text, $26.00, ISBN 9781922182753

Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder
Rudy Castaneda Lopez
Escalator, $30.00, ISBN 9780473295691

It has been interesting to read three such different but compelling books. All three writers are New Zealanders, but only one book is identifiable as a New Zealand novel. I mention this only because there was a session at the recent Writers Week in Wellington during the Arts Festival where I was expecting a robust discussion about what constitutes a New Zealand writer but unfortunately that didn’t happen. So the question is still there, but I don’t think I can address that in this review except through an occasional comment.

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review and Young adults

End times, Susan Pearce

Their Faces Were Shining Tim Wilson Victoria University Press, $30.00, ISBN 9780864736291 August Bernard Beckett Text Publishing, $30.00, ISBN 9781921758041   These days, Second Coming websites glean enough donations to post video ads on music sites, so even if you

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Anti-brain fade, Bernard Beckett

Anti-brain fade Self-confessed geek Bernard Beckett is seduced by the history of science Asked to write on a “book that means a lot to you”, I knew I’d write about non-fiction, and indeed a piece of science writing. I am

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Posted in Imprints

Darts and sledgehammers, Sue McCauley

Two Little Boys Duncan Sarkies Penguin Books, $28.00, ISBN 9780143020912 Acid Song Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $29.99, ISBN 9781877460111 Girlie Gillian Ranstead Penguin Books, $28.00, ISBN 9780143010005 “I thought it was one of those boys’ books,” said a friend when

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Likely stories, James C Raymond

Falling for Science: Asking the Big Questions Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $39.99, ISBN 9781877361722   Imagine yourself in Egypt in the third century BC. You believe the earth is round – what else would cause ships’ masts to appear before

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Posted in Non-fiction and Science

The hum of their parts, Anna Jackson

Paperchase  G Brassi Scholastic, $17.00, ISBN 1869437098 Thieves Ella West Longacre Press, $18.99, ISBN 1877361488 Genesis Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $18.99, ISBN 9781877361524 These three novels are all presented as thrillers. It is interesting to see thrillers being written especially

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review and Young adults

All aboard for Planet Teenage, Brigid Lowry

Deep Fried Bernard Beckett and Clare Knighton Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1887361119    Box Penelope Todd Longacre Press, $16.95, ISBN 1877361127    Sil Jill Harris Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877361143 Elizabeth Knox recently entered the realms of young adult fiction with her

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review and Young adults

Full lives and f words, William Taylor

Malcolm and Juliet Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877135941 Out of Tune Joanna Orwin Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877135909 Coming Back  David Hill Mallinson Rendel, $16.95, ISBN 0908783868 Dark Penelope Todd Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877135968 On a Good

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review and Young adults

Journeys and sympathies, Anna Jackson

Home Boys Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877135887 Lin and the Red Stranger Ken Catran Random House, $16.95, ISBN 1869415779 Tiggie Tompson’s Longest Journey Tessa Duder Penguin, $16.95, ISBN 0143318128   Finding myself questioning the whole genre of young

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Bad girls and bright boys, Raymond Huber

No Alarms Bernard Beckett Longacre, $16.95, ISBN 1877135755 Spider William Taylor Longacre, $16.95, ISBN 1877135607 These two young adult novels are character studies that reveal both the desperation and the potential of the teenage years. No Alarms is a fast-paced,

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