Blog Archives

Cloud obscured, Harvey McQueen

  Beyond the Scene: Landscape and Identity in Aotearoa New Zealand Janet Stephenson, Mick Abbott and Jacinta Ruru (eds) Otago University Press, $45.00, ISBN 9781877372810   I’m clear about the origins of my identity. Banks Peninsula is my heartland. My…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Review

Explaining the explainers, Robert Nola

Secular Sermons: Essays on Science and Philosophy  Alan Musgrave Otago University Press, $45.00, ISBN 9781877372704 Publishers in New Zealand produce books in many areas such as literature, history, politics, biography, art; they produce almost nothing in philosophy. Philosophers in this…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Religion, Review, Science

One whole thing, Martin Edmond

Towards a Promised Land: On the Life and Art of Colin McCahon Gordon Brown Auckland University Press, $79.99, ISBN 9781869404529 As I began to read the 16 essays, plus introduction, that make up Gordon Brown’s Towards a Promised Land, I…
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Posted in Art, Essays, Non-fiction, Review

There and now, Janet Wilson

Floating Worlds: Essays on Contemporary New Zealand Fiction  Anna Jackson and Jane Stafford (eds) Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9780864736017 The increased tempo of public debate in the last decade over issues such as public policy and the arts, canon…
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Posted in Essays, Literature, Non-fiction, Review

Hyde and seek, Timothy G Jones

Lighted Windows: Critical Essays on Robin Hyde  Mary Edmond-Paul (ed) Otago University Press, $40.00,  ISBN 978877372582  Robin Hyde’s 1938 essay “The Singers of Loneliness”, published out of Shanghai in the T’ien Hsia Monthly, gives an account of the New Zealand…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Review

Friction and misunderstanding, Don Aimer

Journeys Towards Progress: Essays of a Geographer on Development and Change in Oceania Ray Watters Victoria University Press, $60.00,  ISBN 9780864735966 Oceania is in the ring of fire: the earth quakes and volcanoes blow as tectonic plates scrape together. It…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction

Sheering off, Michael Hulse

The Love School: Personal Essays Elizabeth Knox Victoria University Press, $33.00,  ISBN 9780864735928 Paremata, the childhood novella which followed her debut novel After Z-Hour, was my own first encounter with Elizabeth Knox’s writing. The copy she gave me is inscribed…
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Posted in Essays, Literature, Non-fiction, Review

Zero waste, Martin Edmond

Into the Wider World: A Back Country Miscellany Brian Turner Godwit, $44.99, ISBN 9781869621421 Near the beginning of the seventh of the 34 essays in this book, the 16-year-old Brian Turner, full of teenage angst and contemplating suicide, is sitting…
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Posted in Essays, Literature, Poetry, Review

Cock-a-doodle-do Jane Westaway

Roosters I Have Known Steve Braunias Awa Press, $30.00, ISBN 9780958275057 When my kids were small, we kept a bantam rooster called Mr Wingspan. The name was meant to be ironic, but what Mr Wingspan lacked in stature he more…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Review

Telling responses, Hamish Clayton

Look This Way: New Zealand Writers on New Zealand Artists Sally Blundell (ed) Auckland University Press, $44.99,  ISBN 9781869403713 Art and letters have always had a close working relationship in New Zealand. Our cultural landscape is pock-marked with painter-poets, jacks-of-all-trades…
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Posted in Art, Essays, Language, Non-fiction, Review
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