Blog Archives

Stodge, serious analysis and spicy bits, Bryan Gould

Moments of Truth: The New Zealand General Election of 2014 Jon Johansson and Stephen Levine (eds) Victoria University Press, $50.00, ISBN 9781776560493 The 2014 general election campaign was, on the face of it, one of the most dramatic of modern…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

The thinking man’s cartoonist, Dylan Horrocks

Brockie: A Memoir in Words, Cartoons and Sketches Bob Brockie New Zealand Cartoon Archive/Fraser Books, $39.50 ISBN 9780958232074 David Lange called Brockie “the thinking man’s cartoonist”. Which is pretty nice of Lange, considering that Brockie had drawn him on various…
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Posted in Art, History, Memoir, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Byzantine complexity, Geoffrey Palmer

Democracy in New Zealand Raymond Miller Auckland University Press, $45.00, ISBN 9781869408350 Democracy in New Zealand is a competent work by an experienced and well-published Professor of Politics at the University of Auckland. Clearly designed as a student text for…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Just like on tv, Annabel Cresswell

The Dwarf Who Moved and Other Remarkable Tales from a Life in the Law Peter Williams HarperCollins, $50.00, ISBN 9781775540472 Criminal lawyers love war stories. War stories are great yarns about epic legal disputes, great victories and shocking defeats, where…
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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Sources of discomfort, W K Hastings

Murder That Wasn’t: The Case of George Gwaze  Felicity Goodyear-Smith Otago University Press, $35.00, ISBN 9781877578991 Part of me wishes this book had not been written. It makes for uncomfortable reading. It is, of course, perfectly legitimate for an author…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Lifting the lid, Colin Peacock

Dirty Politics: How Attack Politics is Poisoning New Zealand’s Political Environment Nicky Hager Craig Potton Publishing, $35.00, ISBN 9781927213360 The Catch: How Fishing Companies Reinvented Slavery and Plunder the Oceans Michael Field Awa Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781927249024   “Laws are…
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Posted in Economics, Media, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

A poverty of compassion, Rod Oram

Child Poverty in New Zealand Jonathan Boston and Simon Chapple Bridget Williams Books, $50.00, ISBN 9781927247860 “New Zealand has the necessary resources to reduce child poverty, and equitable and efficient ways to secure these resources are available. The question is…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review, Sociology

The cost of living, Don Brash

The New Zealand CPI at 100: History and Interpretation Sharleen Forbes and Antong Victorio (eds) Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9780864739667 To my considerable surprise, I enjoyed this book, and learnt much more than I expected from the diversity of…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

The Goliath of public opinion, Gyles Beckford

Peace, Power and Politics: How New Zealand Became Nuclear Free Maire Leadbetter Otago University Press ISBN 9781877578588 I remember that visit of the USS Truxtun to Wellington in August 1976. It was cold and dreary, matching the battle-grey paintwork of…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Sociology

Moral force, John Campbell

The Mighty Totara: The Life and Times of Norman Kirk David Grant Random House, $50.00, ISBN 9781775535799 I was 10 when Norman Kirk died. It was the first death I had ever registered. When the news came through, my parents…
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Posted in Biography, History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review
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