Blog Archives

Genesis of a Māori writer, Tina Makereti

Māori Boy: A Memoir of Childhood
Witi Ihimaera
Vintage, $40.00,
ISBN 9781869797263

It is sometimes useful, in reading a review, to have some sense of the reviewer’s positioning in relation to the material. After all, the New Zealand literary community is small, and it is not uncommon to read a review that says as much about the reviewer’s biases and assumptions as about the book in question.

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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction and Review

Object lessons, Nicholas Reid

The Thrill of Falling Witi Ihimaera Vintage, $38.00, ISBN 9781869799205   Recently, with the death of Margaret Mahy, New Zealand mourned the loss of one of its best-known writers for children. We can take comfort, however, from the fact that

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Posted in Literature, Review, Short stories and Young adults

Problems with facts, Jane Stafford

The Parihaka Woman  Witi Ihimaera Vintage, $38.99, ISBN 9781869797294   New Zealand’s first novel, Taranaki: A Tale of the War, was written by a British (possibly Irish) army officer, Henry Butler Stoney, who served in the conflict. With a speed

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Half a good book, John McCrystal

The Trowenna Sea Witi Ihimaera Penguin Books, $37.00, ISBN 9780143202455 First, let’s deal with the distractions. Unless you were living under a rock in the latter part of 2009, you will be aware that Witi Ihimaera found himself in a

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Prizes and short shrifts, Murray Bramwell

Prizes: Selected Short Stories Janet Frame  Vintage, $34.99, ISBN 9781869791131 His Best Stories  Witi Ihimaera Raupo, $ 30.00, ISBN 9780143010906 Essential New Zealand Short Stories  Owen Marshall (ed) Vintage, $40.00, ISBN 97818697791285 There is something unexpectedly but suitably upbeat about

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Posted in Literature, Review and Short stories

Revisionist urges, Anna Rogers

The Rope of Man Witi Ihimaera Reed, $34.99, ISBN 0790008947 It’s surely a disconcerting and disturbing notion: that a writer’s early books can be rewritten many years later to take account of changes in his life, or in the evolution

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

If it’s claggy, it must be Wellington, Kim Griggs

Auckland: The city in literature ed Witi Ihimaera Exisle Publishing, $34.95, ISBN 0908988362 Dunedin: The city in literature  ed Christine Johnston Exisle Publishing, $34.95, ISBN 0908988451 Christchurch: The city in literature ed Anna Rogers Exisle Publishing, $34.95, ISBN 0908988427 Wellington:

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Posted in Literature and Review

Lord of the wings, Roger Robinson

Sky Dancer Witi Ihimaera Penguin, $34.95, ISBN 0143018698 If Witi Ihimaera is a national treasure, he is an impishly unpredictable one. At an age when he could be securely serene, he persists with youthful glee in taking literary risks. With

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Lord Of The Wings, Witi Ihimaera

Lord Of The Wings  (extract from forthcoming novel )   One day Karuhiruhi, chieftain of the large black seashag iwi, decided to leave his cliff-faced pah and travel throughout his coastal kingdom. His wife, Queen Kara, had just given birth

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Posted in Extract

The inside story, Stuart Murray

Where’s Waari? A History of the Maori through the Short Story ed Witi Ihimaera Reed Publishing, $29.95, ISBN 0790007355 “Here then are 28 stories,” writes Witi Ihimaera in his introduction to this anthology, “– 28 scenes if you like – covering

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Maori, Review and Short stories
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