Blog Archives

Paradise preserved? Simon Upton

Pavlova Paradise Revisited Austin Mitchell Penguin, $27.95, ISBN 0143018264 For those old enough to remember it, The Half-Gallon Quarter-Acre Pavlova Paradise was a funny, disrespectful but good-natured account of what it felt like to be a clever, progressive Left Brit…
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Posted in Non-fiction, Review, Sociology

Art of survival, Ross Calman

Carved Histories: Rotorua Ngati Tarawhai Woodcarving Roger Neich Auckland University Press, $89.95, ISBN 186940257X It would not be a gross overstatement to say that we have got Ngati Tarawhai, a tribe originally from Lake Okataina (east of Rotorua), to thank…
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Posted in Art, History, Māori, Non-fiction, Review

Make-believe, John McCrystal

Paradise Tina Shaw Penguin, $27.95, ISBN 0143018272 Notions of paradise – nirvana, Shangri-la – are universal to human societies, because they are, of course, simply expressions of that most basic of human faculties, hope. Just as we live our lives…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review

Poem — Vincent O’Sullivan

The Retired Bruiser dreaming La Belle Dame at the least   Whenever he saw “I could be happy here” appear across a bedroom wall like words blazoned on a banner by a man in glinting metal, on a horse too…
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Posted in Poem

Fruit ‘n nut, Emma Neale

Only One Angel Jan Kemp University of Otago Press, $24.95, ISBN 1877276170 Snowing Down South Janet Charman Auckland University Press, $21.95, ISBN 1869402685 After publishing a poem in a church magazine, and receiving messages from people all over the country…
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Posted in Literature, Poetry, Review

Poem — Robert Sullivan

South Point, Hawai‘i   On the Big Island, where the ocean voyaging waka left for Tahiti, perhaps Aotearoa, we watched the mooring stones: smoothed by water, smoothed by hands, carved out to moor the waka. We felt the spirits soar…
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Posted in Poem

Eluding closure, Louise O’Brien

Listening to the Everly Brothers and Other Stories Elizabeth Smither Penguin, $27.95, ISBN 0143018205 I’ve never been a big fan of the short story. I’ve always found it to be, at once, far too short and far too long. Mired…
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Posted in Fiction, Literature, Review, Short stories

From ‘Somebodies and Nobodies’, Brian Turner

From Somebodies and Nobodies: Growing up in an extraordinary sporting family Vintage, $34.95, ISBN 1869415078 Soon after I arrived in Christchurch, so did the Beatles – pure coincidence. I donned my dark grey dufflecoat and lurked on the fringe of…
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Posted in Extract

Memory and practice, James Ritchie

Ko Tahu, Ko Au: Kai Tahu Tribal Identity Hana O’Regan Horomaka Publishing, $29.95, ISBN 0473079518 In their long journeys into time, the cultures of Polynesia were refined, renewed and developed in their contents and characters not by conscious effort but…
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Posted in Māori, Non-fiction, Review

Lord Of The Wings, Witi Ihimaera

Lord Of The Wings  (extract from forthcoming novel )   One day Karuhiruhi, chieftain of the large black seashag iwi, decided to leave his cliff-faced pah and travel throughout his coastal kingdom. His wife, Queen Kara, had just given birth…
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Posted in Extract
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