Blog Archives

Mucking in, Bill Sewell

Travelling to New Zealand  ed Lydia Wevers Oxford University Press, $59.95, ISBN 0195584112   It was literally the sort of pub where the conversation stops when a stranger walks in. Only there were just three customers, plus the proprietor, in…
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Posted in Essays, History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Essentials of Bloketopia, Dale Williams

High Times in the High Country: The Life of a Musterer W V Kerr and John Kerr Penguin, $34.95, ISBN 0140294422 Easy Riders: Cruising the Long White Cloud Paul and Val Davis HarperCollins, $24.95, ISBN 1869503570 Blokes and Boats: Text…
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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Upstairs, downstairs, Anna Cottrell

Voice and Vision: A History of Broadcasting in New Zealand, Volume Two  Patrick Day Auckland University Press, $59.95, ISBN 1869402332   If you think this book will illuminate what you imagine goes on behind the screens when the show’s over…
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Posted in History, Media, Non-fiction, Review

Fear and loneliness in Grey Lynn, Catharina van Bohemen

Guilt  Charlotte Grimshaw Abacus, $29.95, ISBN 0349111960   Among the chorus of young women’s voices emerging presently in NZ writing, Charlotte Grimshaw’s is strong and distinctive. Her two novels Provocation and Guilt are set mainly in Auckland and evoke a…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Asking the hard questions, Mark Williams

The Writer at Work: Essays C K Stead Otago University Press, $39.95, ISBN 1877133957   I write on a Waitangi Day on which the Prime Minister has chosen to attend celebrations in Wellington and Auckland but not at Waitangi. The…
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Posted in Essays, Literature, Non-fiction, Review

Good (wo)men wanted Susan Budd

Floating Lines Denis Baker David Ling, $24.95, ISBN 0908990685 Four Ways to be a Woman Sue Reidy Black Swan, $24.95, ISBN 0552996971   Denis Baker’s first collection of short stories and Sue Reidy’s second novel both examine the roles into…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Short stories

Wrestling with the Patriarch, Otto Heim

The Uncle’s Story Witi Ihimaera Penguin, $34.95, ISBN 0140298924   Witi Ihimaera’s eighth novel impressively rounds off his third decade in the market for fiction. Faithful readers will no doubt spot many echoes of earlier Ihimaeras in this latest work.…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Not for the queasy, Chris Knox

Emerald Budgies Karyn Hay Vintage, $24.95, ISBN 1869414535   Wow! Karyn Hay’s first novel got a right regal slagging on Kim Hill this morning, both host Sean Plunket and a queasy-sounding male reviewer whose name I missed really putting the…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Really real, Mark Amery

The Spit Children Jo Randerson Victoria University Press, $19.95, ISBN 0864733968   There was once this young woman who liked to make up stories. They were the kind of stories you might have made up for your best friend when…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Editorial — Issue 47

Valuing writers One of the many reasons New Zealand Books exists is for the sake of writers. Of course, we exist for readers too. Without our readers, both the specialist ones and those who have a general interest in New…
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Posted in Editorial
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