Blog Archives

Bent on purgation, Laurence Jenkins

Long Loop Home: A Memoir  Peter Wells Vintage, $27.95, ISBN 1869414683 The body language in the photograph forecasts much about the story between the covers of Peter Wells’s Long Loop Home. A Memoir. Three figures pose on a deserted beach,…
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Posted in Memoir, Non-fiction, Review

“Considerate autocrats”, Bill Sewell and Harry Ricketts

Editing Writers can get paranoid about editors. We know; we’re writers ourselves. Like many others, we’ve imagined editors to whom we’ve submitted work flicking through it in a spirit somewhere between malice and mischief. A number of masochistic scenarios spring…
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Posted in Opinion

Making light of it, Kim Worthington

Light Readings Fiona Farrell Vintage, $24.95, ISBN 1869414578 It is perhaps a commonplace to note that at no point in history have we relied so heavily on the written word, or been such avid readers: of e-mail, junk mail, the…
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Posted in Literature, Review, Short stories

Rubble and trouble, Philip Temple

Kaput! Stevan Eldred-Grigg 1stBooks Library, $50 approx, ISBN 1587215543 Before me I have a postcard of a 1952 poster published by the Office of Information of the German Democratic Republic. A Berlin working woman stands behind a pile of bricks,…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Lyetening up, Mark Amery

Len Lye: A Biography Roger Horrocks Auckland University Press, $49.95, ISBN 1869402472 Len Lye himself ensures his biography is a ripper of a read. While biographer Roger Horrocks studiously clocks and chronicles the events and years of a long, ever-colourful…
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Posted in Art, Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Desperate Dan, W H Oliver

Intimate Stranger: reminiscences of Dan Davin ed Janet Wilson Steele Roberts, $29.95, ISBN 1877228249 Before I start on the book, I will allow myself a grumble about the cover. This shows in the foreground a highlighted profile of Dan, characteristically…
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Posted in Biography, Non-fiction, Review

Risky business, Alison Kirkman

Whistle Blower: Abuse of Power in the Church: A New Zealand Story Louise Deans Tandem Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877178780 How dangerous men think and how to stay safe for life Brent Sanders Random House Australia, $24.95, ISBN 0091842093 Touchy Subject:…
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Posted in Education, Gender, Health, Non-fiction, Psychology, Review, Sociology

Hard Knox, Robert Onopa

Black Oxen Elizabeth Knox Victoria University Press, $29.95, ISBN 0864734093 From the first paragraph of Elizabeth Knox’s previous novel, Vintner’s Luck, the reader enters as complete and rich an alternative world as exists in contemporary fiction. It is a world…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Babes and Biggles, Louise Wrightson

Spectacular Babies ed Bill Manhire HarperCollins, $24.95, ISBN 1869503775 Boys’ Own Stories: Short Stories by New Zealand Men ed Graeme Lay Tandem Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877178691 Five years ago, I remember jumping up and down in frustration in front of…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Short stories

Passionate Victorians, Edmund Bohan

Tom’s Letters. The Private World of Thomas King, Victorian Gentleman Margot Fry Victoria University Press, $39.95, ISBN 0864733917 One of many challenges facing the biographer of 19th Century New Zealanders can be the lack of intimate letters or diaries. The…
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Posted in History, Letters, Non-fiction, Review
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