Blog Archives

Footmen and gout, Ann Beaglehole

Hungarian refugee Ann Beaglehole recalls Anne Frank, Lenin, Rupert Bear and Little Lord Fauntleroy. I read The Diary of Anne Frank at the age of 10. In the first entry dated 12 June 1942, Anne wrote: “I hope I shall…
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Posted in Opinion

It’s theatre, really, David Larsen

I’ve lost track of how often my ass has fallen asleep from boredom at literary festivals. I’ve lost track of how often I was supremely disappointed by a writer’s public persona. I used to be as earnest and serious and…
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Posted in Opinion

Word-drunk in Auckland, Gordon McLauchlan

Auckland Writers and Readers Festival 2006 The announcement that The Sea had won last year’s Man Booker prize came through while I was reading it, and I have to confess I was perplexed and then annoyed – both by the…
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Christmas list

  New Zealand Books reviewers choose which book they’d most like to see in their Christmas stocking and why. Owen Marshall: The Journals of John Cheever, unfortunately out of print; a wonderfully candid and elegant insight into the life of…
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Posted in Imprints, Opinion

On the whale’s back, Miro Bilbrough

Miro Bilbrough on Whale Rider the movie   I was unusually wary, seeing Whale Rider for the first time.   was in the editing stages of a short feature film, a peculiarly sensitive time to see someone else’s film. Sequestered away…
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Posted in Opinion

Who are we writing for? Chris Else

Chris Else examines the literary contradictions between local content and global success   I work in the creative writing industry. I teach courses, write assessments and act as a literary mentor. I believe in what I do. My advice has…
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Posted in Opinion

Wine, wisdom and so on: Four founders look back at the beginnings of New Zealand Books

Retrospective   Shelagh Duckham Cox We met first in Lauris Edmond’s house at 22 Grass St in the middle of 1990 and the six of us – Lauris, John Mansfield Thomson, Pat Hawthorne, Vincent O’Sullivan, Martin Bond and Shelagh Duckham…
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Posted in Opinion

How to lose friends … Linda Burgess

Reviewing It’s been a good day. I read the last 20 pages, the treat I’d saved myself for the morning, then I got out of bed and wrote the review. Four hundred words in less than half an hour. The…
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Posted in Opinion

“Considerate autocrats”, Bill Sewell and Harry Ricketts

Editing Writers can get paranoid about editors. We know; we’re writers ourselves. Like many others, we’ve imagined editors to whom we’ve submitted work flicking through it in a spirit somewhere between malice and mischief. A number of masochistic scenarios spring…
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Posted in Opinion

Keyboard practice, C K Stead

C K Stead takes a new look at Janet Frame’s The Pocket Mirror. Janet Frame’s The Pocket Mirror (published by Braziller in New York in 1967 and here by Pegasus in 1968) has the appearance, not of a nervous first…
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Posted in Opinion
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