Blog Archives

Barbarians at the gate? Penny Fenwick

A Shakeup Anyway ‑  Government and the Universities in New Zealand in a Decade of Reform Ruth Butterworth and Nicholas Tarling Auckland University Press, $34.95 Universities are amongst the most enduring of all social institutions ‑ a state of affairs…
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Posted in Education, Non-fiction, Review

An old‑fashioned life, David Mackay

Captain James Cook: A Biography Richard Hough Hodder & Stoughton, $54.95 Explorers do not always present easy subjects for biographers. Often the central achievements take up a relatively small portion of their lives and the doggedness and perseverance required for…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Operatically triumphant, Jeanine Graham

Edward Stafford: New Zealand’s First Statesman Edmund Bohan Hazard Press $49.95 Years of exposure to the drama and rhetoric of the performing arts and a professional lifetime of meticulous attention to accuracy and detail have enabled Edmund Bohan to bring…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Still on the margins, Anne Else

Suffrage and Beyond ‑ International Feminist Perspectives Caroline Daley and Melanie Nolan (eds) Auckland University Press, $39.95 The movement for women’s suffrage can be said to have begun at the World Anti‑Slavery Convention held in London in 1840, where American…
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Posted in Gender, History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Poem — Harry Ricketts

A literary history R A K Mason The problem with being a poet in New Zealand is: how do you show it? No one wants a lone crag, or Christ on the swag. But I’m going to be famous, I…
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Posted in Poem

Different qualities, Charles Croot

Ornamental Gorse Chris Orsman Victoria University Press, $19.95 The Persistent Levitator Bernadette Hall Victoria University Press, $19.95 Honeypants Lynda Earle Auckland University Press, $19.95 Black Family Letters from Boston L E Scott Blue Black Press / Bent Publishing, $15.95 What…
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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review

Contributing to the tribal record, Jane McRae

Kati au i konei compiled by Te Ahukaramu Charles Royal Huia Publishers, $24.95 This book contains texts, translations and explanatory notes for 15 waiata from Ngati Toarangatira and Ngati Raukawa. It is written in Maori and English, illustrated with photographs…
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Posted in Māori, Music, Non-fiction, Review

Better at a distance, Gerry Webb

My History, I think Stevan Eldred‑Grigg Penguin Books, $29.95 “Neither autobiography nor yet fiction, this fascinating document traces the workings inside the mind of a leading writer”, says the blurb. The sad fact is that the workings of this writer’s…
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Posted in Autobiography, Non-fiction, Review

Skin and bones, Tom Beard

Skinning a Fish Kevin Ireland Hazard Press, $19.95 The cover illustration ‑ a cold blue etching of a grotesque deep‑sea fish screwed to a ragged knife ‑ is a spare and disturbing image that hints at a hard edge to…
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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review
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