Blog Archives

Behind bars, Roger Robinson

The Prison Diary of A C Barrington: Dissent and Conformity in Wartime New Zealand John Pratt (with an introduction by John Barrington) Otago University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781927322314 When did you last think about being in prison? Not the theory

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Posted in Non-fiction, Review and War

Sports writing as literature, Roger Robinson

Obituary

Roger Robinson, writer for the Runner’s World/Running Times website, puts the work of Norman Harris (1940-2015) into proper context.

We all know, and most of us enjoy, the drama of sport, the physical one that we watch on the field or track or pool, a narrative of high-pressure external action with an uncertain outcome. There’s another simultaneous drama that we can’t watch, but is equally compelling, the psychological one inside the mind of every competitor, a narrative of high-pressure internal action, also with an uncertain outcome. Only the very best sports writers are able to show both.

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Posted in Obituaries

Gee-whizz, Roger Robinson

Maurice Gee: A Literary Companion: Fiction for Young Readers
Elizabeth Hale (ed)
Otago University Press, $35.00,
ISBN 9781877578847

Maurice Gee published Under the Mountain in 1979. It was a success in print and on TV, but for some years it was possible to regard it, and his subsequent work for young readers, as a sideline, a paying Saturday morning job that freed him for the serious adult writing. Times have changed.

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Posted in Literature, Non-fiction and Review

Thomas Hardy’s heart, Roger Robinson

Max Gate Damien Wilkins Victoria University Press, $30.00, ISBN 9780864738998 Thomas Hardy often wrote about death’s little ironies. There’s a poem in the voice of a dead and forgotten woman whose dog, who has also forgotten her, is burying his

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Bovver boys

What they wrote A taste of contributor comments over our first 20 years   On New Zealand Books My hope is that New Zealand Books will provide a forum for frank discussion that dares to rise above the suffocating confines

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Posted in Comment

Late songs, Roger Robinson

The Trouble with Fire Fiona Kidman Vintage, $36.99, ISBN 9781869793593   A woman approaching her 50th wedding anniversary flies from Auckland to meet her aid-volunteer husband in Bangkok, and they fly on to Hanoi, where he becomes seriously ill with

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review and Short stories

The unforgiving minute, Stephanie de Montalk and Melissa Moon

Running Writing Robinson David Carnegie, Paul Millar, David Norton and Harry Ricketts (eds) Victoria University Press, S40.00, ISBN 9780864736390   This book celebrates the distinguished athletic and academic careers of Roger Robinson – the English, Cambridge-educated essayist, editor and literary

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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction and Review

Obituary — Harvey McQueen

Harvey McQueen 1934-2010 Harvey McQueen, who died in Wellington on December 25, was a poet, anthologist, reviewer, memoirist, educational journalist and author, past president of PEN (now New Zealand Society of Authors (PEN NZ Inc)), and literary gardener – a

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Posted in Obituaries

Careful sympathy, Roger Robinson

Katherine Mansfield: The Story-teller Kathleen Jones Viking, $65.00, ISBN 9780670074358   Let’s hear Katherine Mansfield speak first: The cleanliness of Switzerland! Darling, it is frightening. The chastity of my lily-white bed! The waxy-fine floors! The huge bouquet of white lilac,

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Posted in Biography, Literature, Non-fiction and Review

Going the distance, Roger Robinson

Conquerors of Time Lynn McConnell SportsBooks, UK£10.00, ISBN 9781899807888 January 5 was the centenary of the birth of Jack Lovelock. A cake was cut at Timaru Boys’ High School, and a plaque was unveiled at his unlikely birthplace, the literally-named

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Posted in Review and Sport
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