Blog Archives

Making it and making it up, C K Stead

Life as a Novel – A Biography of Maurice Shadbolt, Volume I, 1932-1973
Philip Temple
David Ling, $45.00,
ISBN 9781927305447

Recently, I have been writing an autobiography and consequently hunting out old letters. One I found, written to Kay from London in 1984, told her about getting started on a new novel, the one that would be called The Death of the Body: 

4½ pages written. I’m away – a start. Probably now I won’t run into trouble for 40 or 50 or with a bit of luck 60 pages. We’ll see. What a strange and dangerous business it is, writing fiction. So much investment of self in a leaking ship. No wonder Shadbolt goes around the bend with the effort. I ought to have been kinder to him. I have been a merciless sibling rival (even if it’s true he’s not much of a writer).

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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Good (wo)men wanted Susan Budd

Floating Lines Denis Baker David Ling, $24.95, ISBN 0908990685 Four Ways to be a Woman Sue Reidy Black Swan, $24.95, ISBN 0552996971   Denis Baker’s first collection of short stories and Sue Reidy’s second novel both examine the roles into

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Short stories

The pommie twit and the puppetmaster, Tom Brooking

Hobson Governor of New Zealand 1840–42 Paul Moon David Ling, $49.95, ISBN 0 90899 054 5 To Be A Hero: A Biography of Sir George Grey, 1812–1898 Edmund Bohan HarperCollins, $49.95, ISBN 1 86950 279 5 It is hard to imagine

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Posted in Biography, History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Public postures, private lives, Erik Olssen

Waiting for the Revolution James Edwards David Ling, $24.95, ISBN 0 908990 51 0 Never a White Flag: The Memoirs of Jock Barnes   ed Tom Bramble Victoria University Press, $29.95, ISBN 0 86374 344 5 When I was an

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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

Familiar contours, Kim Worthington

The Snowball Waltz Renée Penguin, $24.95, ISBN 0 140 26885 5 A Tale of Spite and Rancour Josie Mune Penguin, $24.95, ISBN 0 140 26714 X Gingerbread Husbands Barbara Else Godwit, $24.95, ISBN 1 86962 016 X Dreams of America

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

At last, some mayhem, Howard Warner

Mr Halliday and the Circus Master James McNeish David Ling, $19.95, ISBN 0 908990 38 3 The Opawa Affair Edmund Bohan Hazard Press, $19.95, ISBN 0 908790 61 9 Payday in Saudi Selwyn Carson Arrow, $17.95, ISBN 1 86941 285

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Ironies with wry detachment, Iain Sharp

My Name is Paradiso James McNeish David Ling, $24.95 ISBN 0908990278 On the back cover of his seventh novel, there’s a head-and-shoulders photograph of James McNeish taken by his wife, Helen. The author has been caught midway through the process

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