Blog Archives

The unnerving detritus of what was, Jane Westaway

The Shops Steve Braunias and Peter Black (photographer) Luncheon Sausage Books, $40.00, ISBN 9780908689941 Once upon a time, I met people who owned a shop. I was young and impressionable and, on my first visit, was dazzled by a window…
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Posted in Essays, Non-fiction, Review

Rescuing an heroic figure, Jane Westaway

Petals & Bullets: Dorothy Morris, New Zealand Nurse in the Spanish Civil War Mark Derby Potton and Burton, $40.00, ISBN 9781927213766 In the preface to Mark Derby’s new book, Spanish War historian Angela Jackson writes of the challenge in recounting…
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Posted in Biography, History, Non-fiction, Review, War

Telling stories, Jane Westaway

In the Neighbourhood of Fame Bridget van der Zijpp Victoria University Press, $30.00, ISBN 9780864739247 Sleep Sister Karen Breen Eunoia Publishing, $30.00, ISBN 9780994104755 These two new novels appear from what – not long ago – would have been opposite…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Investigation: “The health and safety event of a generation”, Jane Westaway

Tragedy at Pike River Mine: How and Why 29 Men Died Rebecca Macfie Awa Press, $40.00, ISBN 9781877551901 Every New Zealander of voting age should read this book. It recounts the decades-long lead-up to an afternoon, nearly three years ago,…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

The ties that bind, Jane Westaway

The Lie That Settles Peter Farrell Ocean Books, $35.00, ISBN 978192721708 The Lost Pilot Jeffrey Paparoa Holman Penguin, $40.00, ISBN 9781742539201 A History of Silence Lloyd Jones Penguin, $38.00, ISBN 9780143569473 “The cradle rocks above an abyss,” writes Nabokov in…
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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction, Review

Editorial — Issue 103

Opening up the archive We’re starting to feel a little sheepish about the milestones we keep reaching. This is our third and fourth in less than three years. Still, here we go: with this – our 103rd issue – we’re…
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Posted in Editorial

Cashing up, Jane Westaway

Jane Westaway sells a book and wonders how.  Eleven years ago I published a novel. Last Wednesday I received my latest royalty statement. Somewhere out there, I understand, are authors who, along with their statements, get cheques that go some…
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Posted in Comment

Editorial — Issue 100

Whithering or withering? Back in the day, literary couple Iris Murdoch and John Bayley used to speak of “whithering”. They were referring to international festivals at which they were asked to address the question “whither the novel?” At the dawn…
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Posted in Editorial

Editorial — Issue 98

Two issues beyond the 20th anniversary edition of New Zealand Books and two before our 100th  issue, we’ve reached another milestone. The determined enthusiasts who founded the journal might well have predicted the first two, and will certainly have hoped…
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Posted in ebooks, Editorial

Heart to heart, Jane Westaway

Twelve Minutes of Love: A Tango Story Kapka Kassabova Portobello Books, $39.99, ISBN 9781846272844   Tango is just a dance in the sense that rugby is just a ball game. You live and breathe it. Or you don’t. Fans –…
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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction, Review
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