October 31, 2009
Today is the last day of NZ Book Month and the post a day challenge.
It’s been fun and the challenge for me was not what to include but which books to leave out.
Deborah kept up with the calendar. In doing so reminded me of some old favourites and added several books to my must-read list.
Family, work, life and other more important things got in the way of Rob’s good intention to post each day, but what he lacked in quantity was more than compensated for by quality.
He didn’t get round to Bollard and Buckle’s “Economic Liberalisation in New Zealand’ which he reckoned is a real page turner; nor Malcolm McKinnon History of the NZ Treasury which he promised would have you on the edge of your seat.
Maybe next year. 🙂
Deborah has posted on a month of books and in doing so reminded me that Karen Healey became a late entry to the challenge and posts here on Margaret Mahy; and that Oswald Bastable also did some book month posts, although none on his own.
October 31, 2009
Not long after I started my first job on a newspaper the chief reporter told me an author was coming and I was to interview him.
The author was Philip Temple who was on a promotional tour for his newly published novel, Beak of the Moon.
It must have been one of those interviews authors dread because I hadn’t read the book. However, I had heard of the author and was an admirer of his pictorial books like Mantle of the Skies, with its amazing photos of the bush and mountains.
He gave me a copy of Beak of the Moon which I read and then reviewed enthusiastically.
It’s an anthropomorphic story, giving a kea’s eye view of the arrival of people in the high country. The plot is absorbing and the story reflects the author’s knowledge and love of the high country.
Temple is one of New Zealand’s most prolific writers and has won several prizes including the Prime Minister’s Literary Award.
Post 31 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
Over at In A Strange Land Deborah’s final post for the challenge is The Best Loved Bear by Diana Noonan, illustrated by Elizabeth Fuller.
October 30, 2009
Bogor the little woodsman and the pot-smoking hedgehog added wisdom and humour to the pages of the Listener for years.
Bogor was a philosopher and a conservationist way back when green was just a colour and not a political persuasion.
Every now and then the cartoons by Burton Silver were collected into books like this one.
Post 30 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
Over at In A Strange Land Deborah posts on Maddigan’s Quest by Margaret Mahy.
October 29, 2009
Several of the 60 or so recipe books which crowd the shelf in my kitchen are Alison Holst’s.
From the small paper back one for using food processors – a birthday gift nearly three decades ago when kitchen whizzes were new – to the large, hard back Ultimate Collection.
Then there’s her Complete Cooking Class. It’s full of reliable, easy to follow recipes with ingredients which are usually on hand or easy to find.
The tatty cover is testament to the amount of use it gets.
Over at In A Strange Land Deborah posts on Kaitangata Twitch by Margaret Mahy.
Post 29 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
October 27, 2009
No woman could get in to the All Blacks, not even a West Coaster. Or could she?
In Janette Sinclair’s In Touch, Sandy Jones manages it.
This is a light hearted romp with a twist in the tail – and the tale.
Post 27 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
Over at In A Strange Land Deborah posts on Down the Dragon’s Tongue by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Patricia MacCarthy.
Rob’s catching up with The Shag Incident by Stephanie Johnson and two books by Barry Gustafson: His Way, a Biography of Robert Muldoon and kiwi Keith, a Biography of Keith Holyoake.
And Karen Healey has made a late entry to the challenge with: The Alex Quartet by Tessa Duder; The works of Elizabeth Knox; and Gavin Bishop.
October 26, 2009
If you judged The Road to Castle Hill by it’s cover you’d think it was the story of high country farming.
It is, but it’s much more than that.
Christine Fernyhough’s story is not just about how she came to buy Castle Hill Station and learned to farm it. It’s also the story of her involvement with the books in homes programe and the gifted kids programes which grew from that.
The book shows us the challenges Christine faced, including those with tenure review. She also has some very good thoughts on bridging the town-country divide.
I’ve heard Christine speak twice, she’s a delight to listen to and this book is a delight to read. Louise Callan helped with the writing and the words are enhanced by John Bougen’s photos.
Post 26 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
Deborah at In a Strange Land posts on The Witch in the Cherry Tree by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Jenny Williams.
Rob posts on Greg McGee’s Tall Tales, Some True and Memories of Muldoon by Bob Jones.
October 25, 2009
Tracey Richardson reached rock bottom.
She was clinically depressed, morbidly obese, unfit, her business had collpased and two of her four children had cystic fibrosis.
She was faced with giving up or radically changing her life.
She chose to change and succeeded. She went from being a non-athlete to competing in a triathlon and the Hawaii Ironman, raising money for cystic fibrosis in the process – and then wrote about it in Going the Distance.
It’s an honest, open and inspiring account of an ordinary woman doing extraordinary things.
Post 25 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge
Deborah at In A Strange Land posts on Kauri In My Blood by Joanna Orwin.
Oswald Bastable posts on Craftsmen in Uniform by Peter Irwin Cape.