Blog Archives

Going high, Julia Millen

To the Mountains: A Collection of New Zealand Alpine Writing Laurence Fearnley and Paul Hersey (eds) Otago University Press, $45.00, ISBN 9781988531205 Since the arrival of Pacific peoples, New Zealand’s mountains have enthralled and enchanted. Māori revered the craggy peaks…
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Posted in History, Literature, Natural History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Radiant living: a hero rediscovered, Julia Millen

Edmund Hillary: A Biography Michael Gill Potton and Burton, $60.00, ISBN 9780947503383   1953: Edmund Hillary, Everest conqueror (with Tenzing Norgay), is knighted by newly-crowned Queen Elizabeth II. From the time he climbed his first peak in the Southern Alps,…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Discovery on the great southern continent, Julia Millen

Dispatches from Continent Seven: An Anthology of Antarctic Science Rebecca Priestley (ed) Awa Press, $55.00, ISBN 9781927249055 New Zealand’s connection with Antarctica began with early explorers. Abel Janszoon Tasman and Captain James Cook sailed south seeking Terra Australis Incognita and…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Review, Science

Love and land, Julia Millen

Matters of the Heart: A History of Interracial Marriage in New Zealand Angela Wanhalla Auckland University Press, $50.00, ISBN 9781869407315 In Christchurch, May 1970, Stan Wanhalla (Irish, German and Maori ancestry) married Coralie Noonan (Irish, Manx heritage): one of many…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

A rowdy lot, Julia Millen

Convicts: New Zealand’s Hidden Criminal Past Matthew Wright Penguin, $40.00, ISBN 9780143567646 We New Zealanders have always been complacent, even smug, about our nation’s origins. Unlike our nearest, much bigger, neighbour, New Zealand was never a penal colony, having been…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law, Review

Cataloguing the past, Hilary Stace

Te Rau Herenga: A Century of Library Life in New Zealand: The New Zealand Library Association and LIANZA 1910-2010 Julia Millen Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa, $40.00, ISBN 9780473175795   Librarians have long endured negative stereotypes, but…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review

Mist and myth, Julia Millen

Best of Both Worlds: The Story of Elsdon Best and Tutakangahau Jeffrey Paparoa Holman Penguin Books, $40.00, ISBN 9780143008422 Until the early 1960s the source for almost everything we learned at school and read in The School Journal about the…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Celebrating the singular, Julia Millen

Sit There and Draw That! Helen Crabb (“Barc”): Artist and Teacher   Patricia Fry Steele Roberts, $29.99, ISBN 9781877448546 Bill’s Story: A Portrait of W A Sutton Pat Unger Canterbury University Press, $39.99,  ISBN 9781877257704  Painting Out the Past: The Life…
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Posted in Art, Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Old novelists never die, John McCrystal

Guthrie Wilson: Soldier, Writer, Educator Julia Millen First Edition, $34.95, ISBN 1877391638 A stroll past the literature shelves of the “reference-only” section of a public library is a sobering experience for a writer, for there engraved on the spines of…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Cheery beery male bohemia, Julia Millen

The Bookmen’s Dominion: Cultural Life in New Zealand 1920-1950 Chris Hilliard Auckland University Press, $34.99, ISBN 1869403622 Pat Lawlor’s “bookmen” or “frothblowers” were middle-aged men identifiable and, in a way, isolated not by such things as flamboyant attire, but by…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology
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