Blog Archives

Yesterday today, Glyn Harper

How We Remember: New Zealanders and the First World War Charles Ferrall and Harry Ricketts (eds) Victoria University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9780864739353 With the centenary of WWI now upon us, a flood of books on New Zealand’s role in that…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Sociology, War

War stories, Anne Else

Passing Through Coral Atkinson Dancing Tuatara, $35.00, ISBN 9780473262693 Heartland Jenny Pattrick Black Swan, $37.00, ISBN 9781775535850 Tropic of Guile Sue McCauley Xlibris, $42.00, ISBN 9781483683195 All three of these novels centre on hard-won survival against the odds of poverty,…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Outstanding achievement or pitiful war? Janet Hunt

Making a New Land: Environmental Histories of New Zealand Eric Pawson and Tom Brooking (eds) Otago University Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781877578526 Making a New Land: Environmental Histories of New Zealand is a revised, expanded and renamed edition of Environmental Histories…
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Posted in History, Natural History, Review, Sociology

Continuity and change, Simon Murfitt

Above the City: A History of Otago Boys’ High School 1863-2013 Rory Sweetman Otago Boys’ High School Foundation, $75.00, ISBN 9780473247720 It was with some trepidation that I approached this book. It is a weighty hard-cover history, running to 440…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

Worlds old and new, Nicholas Reid

Purgatory Rosetta Allan Penguin, $30.00 ISBN 9780143571025 James Cook’s New World Graeme Lay Fourth Estate, $37.00 ISBN 9781775540410 There’s one current phenomenon in New Zealand literature that I’m watching with great interest. It’s the fact that, with a few honourable…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

“The retrospective glance”, Bronwyn Dalley

Journey to a Hanging: The Events that Set New Zealand Race Relations Back by a Century Peter Wells Vintage, $45.00 ISBN 9781775533900 As a child, I owned a Webster’s Illustrated Dictionary. My brother had bought it in mail-order instalments over…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

Larger than life, Simon Upton

Richard Seddon: King of God’s Own – The Life and Times of New Zealand’s Longest-serving Prime Minister Tom Brooking Penguin, $65.00 ISBN 9780143569671 I grew up in a very complacent country which didn’t really take its history seriously. New Zealand…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Ticking on by, Catherine Robertson

Carnival Sky Owen Marshall Vintage, $38.00 ISBN 9781775535827 The White Clock Owen Marshall Otago University Press, $25.00, ISBN 9781877578632 Both of Marshall’s latest works centre on confrontations with mortality, and both do a fine job of showing that these are…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

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
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