Blog Archives

The art of the odd, Janet Wilson

Swallowing Diamonds Marilyn Duckworth Vintage, $26.95, ISBN 1869415485 In Marilyn Duckworth, New Zealand has its finest writer of the absurd. Although others have written about states of unreality or non-reality – most particularly Janet Frame, younger novelists like Elizabeth Knox,

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Light reading, dark lives, Margie Thomson

The Denniston Rose Jenny Pattrick Black Swan, $26.95, ISBN 1869415612 This highly readable historical novel has already had a big thumbs-up from readers, and it’s not hard to understand why. It’s a darkly engaging story that almost constitutes a new

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Posted in Fiction, Literature and Review

Boy’s Own snapshots, Hugh Roberts

Imperial Vistas Family Fictions Kendrick Smithyman Auckland University Press, $24.95, ISBN 186940274X Last Poems  Kendrick Smithyman The Holloway Press, $65, ISBN 095823132X It’s an interesting parlour game to speculate how New Zealand’s literary history might have changed had Kendrick Smithyman

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Posted in Literature, Poetry and Review

Hobson’s choice, Bryan Gilling

Te Ara Ki Te Tiriti: The Path to the Treaty of Waitangi Paul Moon David Ling, $29.95, ISBN 0908990839 The Treaty of Waitangi often appears to have sprung forth, fully formed, from William Hobson’s pen on 6 February 1840. Many

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Posted in History, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

Horace at Kapiti, Roger Robinson

Early in the second of the “Four Letters in Verse” that make up Alistair Te Ariki Campbell’s Poets in Our Youth, the poet is recalling for Harry Orsman how as a boarder at Weir House, I found myself in the

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Posted in Comment

Letters — Issue 59

Spiteful review Is it surprising that Michael Grimshaw was so destructive in his December 2002 review of Snapshots on the Journey? Perhaps, when we notice the self-promotion of his own anthology, compiled with the help of one of the editors

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Posted in Letters

Truth vs the good story, Laura Kroetsch

Barbed Wire Between Us: A story of love and war Derek Round Random House, $29.95, ISBN 1869415248 Last of the Whalers: Charlie Heberley’s Story Heather Heberley Cape Catley, $29.95, ISBN 0908561903 In Search of Elisa Marchetti: A Writer’s Search for

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Posted in Autobiography, Biography, History, Non-fiction and Review

Speaking frankly of Frank and James K, Stevan Eldred-Grigg

An Affair of the Heart: A Celebration of Frank Sargeson’s Centenary ed Graeme Lay and Stephen Stratford Cape Catley, $49.99, ISBN 0908561938 O Jerusalem – James K Baxter: An Intimate Memoir Mike Minehan Hazard Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877270385 Two icons

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Posted in Essays, Literature, Memoir, Non-fiction and Review

The odd couple, Eric Richards

States of Mind: Australia and New Zealand 1901-2001 ed Arthur Grimes, Lydia Wevers, and Ginny Sullivan Institute of Policy Studies, Victoria University of Wellington, $39.00, ISBN 0908935644 There is something peculiar about two affluent and well-established small countries sitting together

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Posted in History, Non-fiction, Politics & Law and Review

Speed reading, Bernard Carpinter

50 Years on Track Sandy Myhre Hodder Moa Beckett, $79.99, ISBN 186958936X Classic Racers – New Zealand’s Grand Prix Greats Eoin Young HarperSports, $34.99, ISBN 1869504607 If you noticed that McLaren cars won the first two Formula One Grands Prix

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Posted in Non-fiction, Review and Sport
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