Blog Archives

No getting away from the man, Linda Burgess

Civilisation: Twenty Places on the Edge of the World  Steve Braunias Awa Press, $36.00, ISBN 9781877551352 Steve Braunias is one of our very best writers. How does he do it, wonders the reviewer, as within a sentence Braunias moves from

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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Review

Moving the world along, Mark Houlahan

These Rough Notes Bill Manhire, Anne Noble, Norman Meehan, Hannah Griffin Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9780864738318 Selected Poems Bill Manhire Victoria University Press, $35.00, ISBN 9780864737625 “In the future,” Bill Manhire predicts, while introducing his sweeping 2005 anthology of

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Posted in Literature, Photography, Poetry, Review

More pork and potatoes, anyone? John O’Leary

Poenamo Revisited John Logan Campbell (essay and notes by R C J Stone) Godwit, $60.00, ISBN 9781869797980 Most New Zealanders – even those living south of the Bombay Hills – have heard of John Logan Campbell, the Father of Auckland,

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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

Magnificent obsession, Spiro Zavos

Graham Henry: Final Word Bob Howitt HarperCollins, $50.00, ISBN 9781869509736 Here is an heroic assertion. Graham Henry is the greatest coach in the history of rugby. His rivals for this title include Danie Craven, Carwyn James, Fred Allen and, possibly,

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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review, Sport

Memory and oxo cubes, Murray Bramwell

The Little Enemy Nicholas Reid Steele Roberts, $29.95, ISBN 9781877577512 A Man Runs into a Woman Sarah Jane Barnett Hue and Cry Press, $25.00, ISBN 9780473213992 The Same as Yes Joan Fleming Victoria University Press, $28.00, ISBN 9780864736987 These three

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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review

Walking upon ashes, Harry Ricketts

The Search for Anne Perry Joanne Drayton HarperCollins, $45.00, ISBN 9781869508883 So Brilliantly Clever: Parker, Hulme and the Murder that Shocked the World Peter Graham Awa Press, $42.00, ISBN 9781877651123 On 22 June 1954, in Victoria Park, Christchurch, 16-year-old Pauline

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Posted in Biography, History, Non-fiction, Review

Letters – Issue 101

Congratulations The novelist, Alex Miller, who lives in Melbourne (the city where I mostly reside), said that “writing fiction is a dangerous occupation. It is an act of imagination that requires the writer to confront unclear aspects of the self;

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Posted in Letters

The great sucking void, John McCrystal

Soon Charlotte Grimshaw Vintage, $38.00, ISBN 9781869799984 Ever since the 1999 publication of her first novel, Provocation, Charlotte Grimshaw’s writing has attracted a cloud of admirers and a liberal garnishing of awards. She is a novelist by instinct, if not

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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Glamorous facelift, Stella Ramage

Two Hundred and Forty Years of New Zealand Painting Gil Docking (with additions covering 1970-1990 by Michael Dunn and 1990-2010 by Edward Hanfling) David Bateman, $100.00, ISBN 9781869538040 Publishers presumably ask themselves some questions before undertaking a new book. What

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Posted in Art, History, Non-fiction, Review

The frozen continent, Janet Hunt

Science on Ice: Discovering the Secrets of Antarctica Veronica Meduna Auckland University Press, $60.00, ISBN 9781869405830 “Visiting this frozen landscape,” writes Veronica Meduna, “is to gain a fresh perspective on our world, almost like going to another planet and looking

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Posted in Non-fiction, Review, Science
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