Blog Archives

Not plain sailing, Anne French

Shapes on the Wind David Lewis HarperCollins, $29.95, ISBN 073226801X   In 1934, when I was seventeen, I celebrated my last days at boarding school by building a canoe/kayak and informing the headmaster that I was going home in it…
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Posted in Autobiography, Non-fiction, Review

Springing a trap for islands, Phil Barton

Captain Cook’s World: Maps of the Life and Voyages of James Cook RN  John Robson Random House, $59.95, ISBN 1869414098 The publisher’s blurb states that the book under review  “is an atlas, chronology and biography of the life and voyages”…
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Posted in Art, Biography, History, Non-fiction, Pacific, Review

Rain Queen, Judith Fyfe

Salote, Queen of Paradise  Margaret Hixon Otago University Press, $49.95, ISBN 1877133787 The image of Queen Salote, in London for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth in June 1953 – defiantly riding in an open coach in the pouring rain, and…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Pacific, Review

Roads to nowhere? Ruth Butterworth

Building the Constitution ed Colin James Institute of Policy Studies, $45, ISBN 090893548X Some time in 1997, with the prolonged aftermath of the first MMP election still agitating the establishment and mightily diverting the rest of us, the idea gained…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

What about the pets? Suzanne Innes-Kent

Recycled People: Forming New Relationships in Mid-life  Coral Atkinson & Paula Wagemaker Shoal Bay Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877251046 Recycled People is a timely and welcome book. When one examines the generation of any timely idea, one discovers that it arises…
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Posted in Health, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Margaret Atwood in New Zealand, Anne Else

Beginnings and Endings   Mostly I want to read what writers write, not look at r listen to them. But in the mid-1980s, I went to hear Margaret Atwood. Murder in the Dark had recently appeared, and she read “Happy…
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Posted in Opinion

Purposeful nonsense? John O’Connor

Comment  Lenin once said, “When I see a dung heap, I do not rummage in it to see if it is a dung heap.” Polemics, of course – entertaining, but not enlightening. Freed, Morepork, Parallax, And, Splash (all discontinued) –…
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Posted in Comment

NZ domestic, Lois Daish

At Home in New Zealand: Houses History People  ed Barbara Brookes Bridget Williams Books, $49.95, ISBN 1877242047 Dave the dishwasher, who had recently moved to Wellington from a small town, was drying cutlery behind the counter of a café I…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Not a hot Friday, Denis Welch

Morrieson’s Motel ed Gordon McLauchlan Tandem Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877178721 Well, it probably seemed like a good idea at the time. In fact, we know that it did, because Gordon McLauchlan tells us so. In the introduction to Morrieson’s Motel…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Short stories

Turning the pages, Keith Maslen

A Book in the Hand: Essays on the History of the Book in New Zealand ed Penny Griffith, Peter Hughes and Alan Loney Auckland University Press, $39.95, ISBN 1869402316 These fifteen essays, based on papers given at the first New…
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Posted in Essays, History, Literature, Non-fiction, Review
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