Books & Writers Weekend-SUN-2015
“I’ve never seen anything like it” said Kate De Goldi on Radio New Zealand. Reviewing Mary Kelleher’s children’s book The Story of a New Zealand Truck Driver, she called it a complete feast for the eye, marvellously informative, an extraordinary thing, exquisite, a really original idea and the apotheosis of Mary’s skills as a fabric artist. The truck driver is Bert Williams and his story as a carrier in Banks Peninsula from the 1920s to the 1960s (based on an oral history) is illuminated by Mary through an enchantingly crafted textile collage. The book comes complete with a music CD by Titirangi local David Parker. If you are 8 or 80 this book takes you on an entertaining and celebratory romp through local history. Mary is in conversation with textile artist, curator and writer Helen Schamroth.
The Poetry of Place
Two poets with clear voices explore place, time, and identity in conversation with poet, reviewer and blogger Paula Green.
In our stressed-out, overly-online lives, poetry provides us the opportunity to step outside. Kerry Hines in Young Country, a beautifully made book, with her writing and the deliciously reproduced photographs of New Zealand 19th-century photographer William Williams, takes us to another country. Image and poem converse congenially on topics of house and home, street and station, private and public identities.
From Aotearoa to Hawai’i, and islands in between, poet Leilani Tamu writes of places and histories, people and events, of inspiration and stupidity, beauty and grotesquery, in her book The Art of Excavation. Her writing can be lyrical and satirical, angry and appreciative, personal and detached, and very funny.
Greg McGee has spent some 15 years working on The Antipodeans. Beginning with the return to Venice of an old man determined to confront his past, this story spans three generations of a New Zealand family and their interaction with three families of Northern Italy. From Venice to the South Island of New Zealand, from the assassination of a Gestapo commander in WWII to contemporary real estate shenanigans in Auckland, from political assassination in the darkest days of the Red Brigade to the vaulting cosmology of particle physics, The Antipodeans is a novel of epic proportions where families from the opposite ends of the earth discover an intergenerational legacy of love, blood and betrayal. More will be revealed in a conversation with David Larsen.
Sponsored by South Pacific Pictures
The People and the Land
Publisher Bridget Williams has done it again. Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History is a gloriously illustrated, wonderfully written, comprehensive, scientifically sound – it won a science publication award – and unfudged account of the Polynesian people who settled these islands, and their subsequent histories and connections and achievements. Over several years historians Atholl Anderson, the late Judith Binney and Aroha Harris have given their expertise, knowledge and understanding to write this signal work. Aroha Harris and contributor Melissa Williams (Panguru and the City) kōrero with Tainui Stephens, broadcaster, filmmaker and teller of stories of tangata and whenua.
Striking a Chord
Anna Smaill has created a sensation with her first novel; the Huffington Post called her an amazing rising star. The Chimes, a dystopian novel, has been described as original, inventive, beautifully written, and completely absorbing – ‘a mind-expanding literary debut composed of memory, music and imagination’. Anna is in conversation with distinguished novelist Paula Morris.
A life in Motion
The recognition of Len Lye and his multifarious talents took longer here than in Britain and the US, but New Zealand now knows and celebrates his work. Roger Horrocks, who has his own take on sight and sound, motion and music, has been a key part of this recognition. He follows his definitive Len Lye biography (not to mention the libretto, the documentary and the exhibitions) with Zizz! The life and art of Len Lye in his own words. Roger assisted Len Lye in New York, helping him to look after his written material which Roger has selected from and edited for this new book. Roger talks with Andrew Clifford, director of the new Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery in Titirangi and fellow Trustee of the Len Lye Foundation.
New Zealand By Design
In his new book Living in Paradox, Garth Falconer discusses the history, nature and process of urban design across New Zealand. He explores the dynamic story of this young, vigorous and intriguingly complex country at a time when huge shifts are occurring in the way we live our lives, particularly in the metropolis that is Auckland. He is in conversation with Gordon McLauchlan.
Bare Feet and Grass Stains
Bullrush! A Celebration of the Great New Zealand Game. For those of a certain generation, Bullrush was an introduction to contact sport. There was only one rule – get past the keeper and if you fail you join him in the middle. Sometimes involving up to 30 or 40 kids, it was a playtime game that was measured by scraped knees, torn clothes and much bruising. Jim Mora talks to author David Slack about this training ground for All Blacks.