Blog Archives

Outside the shadow, Kim Worthington

Janet Frame The extensive media attention given to Janet Frame’s death in January is utterly fitting for one who may well be our country’s greatest writer and is certainly our most distinguished, having been seriously considered for the Nobel Prize…
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Family gatherings, Isa Moynihan

Lily’s Cupola Bronwyn Tate University of Otago Press, $29.95, ISBN 1877276596 Bloom Kelly Ana Morey Penguin, $27.95, ISBN 0143018922 Joybird Rosemary Wildblood David Ling, $29.95, ISBN 0998990901 The three-generation novel has always been popular with women writers. Besides Lily’s Cupola,…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Letting go, Stephanie de Montalk

I was making coffee, gazing into what I like to think is the eastern ambience of the trelliswork, diamond paving, corner grotto and leaves in the garden courtyard next door, going through my writer’s routine, when my husband said, “You…
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The body beautiful, Rosemary McLeod

Leisure and Pleasure: Reshaping and Revealing the New Zealand Body 1900-1960  Caroline Daley Auckland University Press, $39.99, ISBN 186940291X Undressed: New Zealand fashion designers tell their stories Stacy Gregg Penguin, $29.95, ISBN 014301899X It may be only recently that firemen…
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Posted in Art, History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

The theatre of life, Susan Budd

Iridescence Peter Wells Random House, $34.95, ISBN 1869415833 With its gorgeously frilled and furbelowed Victorian crinolines, melodrama and high camp, Iridescence is strongly reminiscent of Peter Wells’s screenplay for Desperate Remedies, which blew the mandatory bucolic naturalism of New Zealand…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Telling it like it is, Brent Southgate

I am an Insect Simon Pollard Reed, $19.95, ISBN 1869487400 The Life-size Guide to New Zealand Wildflowers Andrew Crowe Penguin, $24.95, ISBN 0143018477 Pick Up a Pack: a guide to tramping and camping the New Zealand way Keith Olsen Reed,…
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Posted in Biography, Children, Literature, Natural History, Non-fiction, Review

Politics and culture between the sheets, Phil Kawana

Huia Short Stories Five: Contemporary Maori Fiction [editor not given] Huia, $29.95, ISBN 186969032X Without Reservation – Indigenous Erotica (ed) Kateri Akiwenzie-Damm Huia, $34.95, ISBN 0973139625   Both these books from Huia are collections of indigenous literature, but the similarities…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Māori, Review, Short stories

Risky business, Bernadette Hall

Young Knowledge: The Poems of Robin Hyde (ed) Michele Leggott Auckland University Press, $49.99, ISBN 1869402987   I have known griefs o more than three – Tooth aching, Child-bearing, And the voice breaking Those silent frontiers Of dream, held hazardously.…
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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review

Journeys and sympathies, Anna Jackson

Home Boys Bernard Beckett Longacre Press, $18.95, ISBN 1877135887 Lin and the Red Stranger Ken Catran Random House, $16.95, ISBN 1869415779 Tiggie Tompson’s Longest Journey Tessa Duder Penguin, $16.95, ISBN 0143318128   Finding myself questioning the whole genre of young…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Young adults

Angels in the meat-grinder, Les Cleveland

While You’re Away: New Zealand Nurses at War 1899-1948 Anna Rogers Auckland University Press, $39.95, ISBN 1869403010 Nursing might be one of the few remaining professions not entirely driven by greed or self-interest. Anna Rogers assembles a chronicle of service…
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Posted in Health, History, Non-fiction, Review, War
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