Launching City Voice: News you can use

One of Wellington’s most significant independent media outlets of the 1990s has been fully digitised and is now available to view on Wellington City Recollect.

City Voice Collection on Recollect

For just over eight years City Voice dominated Wellington’s alternative media scene. More than twenty years after its last issue was printed, the library’s archived collection of the weekly newspaper has been fully digitised and is available to view and search on our heritage platform Wellington City Recollect.

Andy Foster as a young city councillor on the cover of the oldest copy held in the collection

City Voice was founded by its editor Simon Collins and the journalist Jeremy Rose. They were soon joined by journalists Nick Bollinger, Mark Cubey & Rachel Woodley, the photographer David Gurr, the artist Chris Healey as well as a core of advertising, administration and distribution staff. The newspaper soon became the regular outlet for dozens of reviewers, columnists and journalism students and began the concept of a ‘paper within a paper’ where several pages would be regularly handed over to local communities who until then had few opportunities to have their voices heard.

Beginning at a time when access to the internet was still largely confined to universities and government institutions, City Voice distilled the talents of many local writers in a single publication before such output became diluted across a multitude of different online forums and websites.  It also provided a mouthpiece for a new generation of activists before the introduction of social media as well as holding the city council and local body politicians to account. Operating out of offices in Cuba Mall, it was owned by the Te Aro Publishing Cooperative Ltd with shares being held by around 160 people who had invested a total of $165,000 as core capital but the newspaper principally operated on its advertising revenue in an era before the widespread growth of the online advertising absorbed much of this income stream.

‘Humourbeasts’ Jermain Clement and Taika Waititi (aka Taika Cohen) appear on the cover of a 1999 issue

Every Thursday a new edition would hit the streets with 21,000 copies being delivered free to every letterbox in the CBD & the inner-suburbs and another 7000 copies available to be picked up in cafes or from newsstands scattered throughout the city. It soon became the go-to place to find out what was happening in the arts and theatre scene with extensive listings and reviews published every week.

However, it was with its news coverage that City Voice had its biggest impact. It avoided the crime, violence and scandal stories that often dominated main-stream media and instead covered local stories where it felt that the public could make a difference with issues such as the planned development of the waterfront or the inner-city motorway bypass. Controversial neo-liberal reforms which had become common within central-government in the early 1990s were starting to have an impact at a local level with various proposals to introduce user charges for social & community services and the paper helped galvanise opposition to many of these. City Voice became a democratic alternative to commercial media where the perceived need to ‘sell’ news was turning people (particularly youth) away from consuming it.

Later to become a city councillor, Laurie Foon states her views on the proposed ‘bypass’ through Te Aro in 1998

The newspaper became a ‘hot-house’ for young journalism students, many of whom went on to have notable careers in the media and communications industries. Volunteers gained experience in the field, assisting staff writers to research and write stories as well as helping out with page layouts and sub-editing. Regular columns provided an alternative take on main-stream staples such as car, fashion and restaurant reviews, the emphasis being on what most Wellingtonians actually consumed rather than expensive aspirational products and services which were often well beyond what many people could afford. Graphic design was also an important part of the newspaper and improvements in computer & printing technology over its eight-year run can be seen in the manner in which its ‘look’ developed.  Advertising ‘reps’ worked hard to constantly sell space in the paper to bring in the revenue required to pay staff and to keep the presses rolling. However, roles were not siloed and someone employed to sell advertising was welcome to try their hand at writing reviews while a journalist who had written an investigative article was just as likely to be helping with page layouts as print deadlines approached. 

Illustrating how some issues never change, this cover from 2000 details the concern of the city potentially losing ownership of its water assets.

However, despite its editorial success and impact, advertising revenue never fully met its costs, eventually resulting in capital reserves being drained. Investigative articles became too narrowly focussed on a small range of subjects and the arrival of the internet also started to have an impact following the launch of several local ISPs which drew readers away from print media as they discovered new online sources of news and information. In late 2000 the board of directors, aware of the personal liability they would be subject to if accused of ‘reckless trading’, decided to wind up the cooperative. After a brief hiatus, a new company was formed called City Voice Media Ltd which raised new capital and continued to publish the newspaper with a new look. However, it soon became apparent that the newspaper was no longer financially sustainable and its final issue was printed on 5th July 2001.  

City Voice on Recollect

Some of the information in this blog has come from the article “City Voice, an alternative to the corporate model” by Simon Collins & Jeremy Rose, published in Pacific Journalism Review, Vol.  10, No. 2 (2004).

Update on email notifications

hand showing update sign

Unfortunately, over the past week there was an outage of our email notifications, which meant they failed to send. While this issue is now resolved, this means that if you have reserves available, or items coming due (or overdue) you won’t have been alerted by email.hand showing update sign

If you have active loans or reserves, please check your library card via the online catalogue or via our WCL Mini app, to see their current status.

We apologise if you were affected by this issue. If you would like to contact library staff about your account, please visit your local branch library, or email us at enquiries@wcl.govt.nz 

Join the phenomena – Pachinko by Min Jin Lee


Pachinko is a ‘powerful story about resilience and compassion’ – Barack Obama.

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee has become a cultural phenomenon over the last few years, gaining legions of fans and spawning a smash hit television series. Now, thanks to Libby, we are excited to offer this unlimited access to the eBook and audiobook for a limited time!

On its release in 2017, Pachinko gained rave reviews from the likes of from The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Guardian. Reviewers have compared the book to the works of writers like Charles Dickens or John Galsworthy, thanks in part to its epic historical sweep and its emotional resonance.

The plot revolves around four generations of a Korean immigrant family who, after being exiled from Korea, forge a new life in their adopted homeland of Japan. Set between the years of 1910 and 1989, the novel covers a huge sweep of time when the vagrancies of history often played a pivotal role to the fates of all concerned. At the heart of the books, you’ll find an exploration of human relationships and the ups and downs of a family. Many themes are explored in an expressive and emotional style; amongst them themes of discrimination, family and cultural identity,  faith  and exclusion.

The book has been shortlisted for a whole plethora of prizes, including being a finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction 2017. Since its release, it has sold over one million copies.

Now is your chance to grab an electronic copy of the book to see what the phenomenon is all about! Simply login to Overdrive or Libby with your library card to access a copy. Join the Pachinko phenomena and read now!

Overdrive cover Pachinko, Min Jin Lee (eBook)
“Yeongdo, Korea 1911. In a small fishing village on the banks of the East Sea, a club-footed, cleft-lipped man marries a fifteen-year-old girl. The couple have one child, their beloved daughter Sunja. When Sunja falls pregnant by a married yakuza, the family face ruin. But then Isak, a Christian minister, offers her a chance of salvation: a new life in Japan as his wife.Following a man she barely knows to a hostile country in which she has no friends, no home, and whose language she cannot speak, Sunja’s salvation is just the beginning of her story. Through eight decades and four generations, Pachinko is an epic tale of family, identity, love, death and survival. (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Pachinko,’Min Jin Lee (Audiobook)
“Yeongdo, Korea – 1911. In a small fishing village on the banks of the East Sea, a club-footed, cleft-lipped man marries a fifteen-year-old girl. The couple have one child: their beloved daughter Sunja. When Sunja falls pregnant by a married yakuza, the family face ruin. But then, Isak, a Christian minister, offers her a chance of salvation: a new life in Japan as his wife. Following a man she barely knows to a hostile country in which she has no friends, no home, and whose language she cannot speak, Sunja’s salvation is just the beginning of her story.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Appy Seniors events for Techweek22 | 16 to 22 May

Techweek is a nationwide series of events, showcasing and celebrating New Zealand innovation providing a platform for everyone to meet, share ideas and create connections to enhance our future world.

Wellington City Libraries’ is taking part on techweek with Appy Seniors events in six of our libraries and one Community Centre. Check the full list, per location, on the document below. Registration is encouraged and the links to each event is also on the document.

Author Interview: Nikky Lee in conversation


How long can it take to write an epic young adult fantasy novel ?
How do you go about creating an immersive and detailed fantasy world ?
How do you go about writing believable and compelling fantasy creatures ?
What does it take as a writer to bring such a huge project to a successful fruition ?
What is it like to win a PitDark publishing competition ?
And indeed what is a PitDark publishing competition ?

Well, our interview with debut fantasy novelist Nikky Lee reveals the answers to all these questions.

Fantasy novelist Nikky Lee has just released her first full length novel, The Rarkyn’s Familiar. The book  is a thrilling, young adult high fantasy epic tale (the first in a series), set in a wonderfully imagined and detailed fantasy universe.  The tale revolves round a young girl, Lyss, who accidently gets magically bonded to a half bird half  person creature called a Rarkyn; A bond that threatens to drive her mad. The book is a quest tale that features various forms of magic, and a narrative where different types of worlds intersect . At its core, the novel explores themes of acceptance, revenge, redemption and how to deal with anxiety.

Lee grew up in Western Australia and now lives in Aotearoa New Zealand with a husband, a dog and a couch potato cat. Whilst The Rarkyn’s Familiar is Nikky’s first novel, it is far away from her first published work. Nikky has already won a whole host of awards for her short stories, as well as being published in numerous magazines, anthologies. Nikky has also had works broadcasted on the radio.

We are thrilled that Nikky Lee took time out from her very busy schedule to discuss her new book, and we wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to her. For more information visit www.nikkythewriter.com.

This interview was done in conjunction with Caffeine and Aspirin, the arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM. You can hear the interview below. You can also place a reserve for The Rarkyn’s Familiar which is due into the library soon, for details see below.

Rarkyn’s Familiar. / Lee, Nikky
“A perfect story for fans of Sarah J. Maas’ THRONE OF GLASS. An orphan bent on revenge. A monster searching for freedom. A forbidden pact that binds their fates. Lyss had heard her father’s screams, smelled the iron-tang of his blood. She witnessed his execution. And plotted her revenge. Then, a violent encounter traps Lyss in a blood-pact with a Rarkyn from the otherworld, imbuing her with the monster’s forbidden magic-a magic that will erode her sanity. To break the pact, she and the Rarkyn must journey to the heart of the Empire. All that stands in their way are the mountains, the Empire’s soldiers, and Lyss’ uneasy alliance with the Rarkyn. But horrors await them on the road-horrors even Rarkyns fear. The most terrifying monster isn’t the one Lyss travels with. It’s the one that’s awoken inside her. Monsters of a feather flock together.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Comicify Your Life: ComicFest Art Competition Results

The big day is finally here, and the ComicFest 2022 livestream is in full swing as we write these words! In the lead-up to the launch of this programme, aspiring comic artists and illustrators from across Wellington submitted their finest and most creative works to our Comicify Your Life drawing competition. Artists submitted autobiographical works across four age categories (5-8, 9-12, 13-17, and 18+), and were vying for a range of thematic category awards, as well as the coveted Grand Prizes, generously supported by Unity Books and Gecko Press.

During the ComicFest 2022 livestream, following a fantastic illustration workshop from the incomparable Kay O’Neill, we announced the category awards and the Grand Prize winners for each age group for the Comicify Your Life competition. You can see a gallery of the winning images below (click or tap on each image to view the full-size scan). Congratulations to all our winners — we will be contacting you all over the coming days to organise the delivery of your prizes.

Themed Spot Prizes

Grand Prize: Ages 5-8

5-8 category winner: Ehan

 

Grand Prize: Ages 9-12

9-12 category winner: Sophia

 

Grand Prize: Ages 13-17

13-17 category winner: Jaime

 

Grand Prize: Ages 18+

18+ category winner: Kiri

 

Congratulations to all of our prize-winners, and a massive thank you to everyone who submitted a piece of work to this competition!

ComicFest 2022 is Sat 7 May! How to ask your questions

It’s the eve of ComicFest! Join us online all day tomorrow (Saturday 6 May) from 9am for this fantastic – and totally free – national celebration of all things comics-related in New Zealand!

ComicFest 2022 website, programme and livestream!

ComicFest artists include Dylan Horrocks, Giselle Clarkson, Jem Yoshioka, Jonathan King, Kay O’Neill, Mary Guo, Michel Mulipola, Sarah Laing and Tara Black.

Although we won’t be together in person, we still want to give you the opportunity to ask our amazing artists questions!

Q&A: Handing you the (proverbial) mic!

This year, our Q&A sessions will be hosted via a moderating platform called Slido. To submit your questions on the day, go to slido.com and enter our participant code ComicFestNZ.

Or, scan the QR code below to enter the chat!

Author Interview: Ngaio Marsh winner Brannavan Gnanalingam

Brannavan Gnanalingam is one of the most accomplished authors working in New Zealand/Aotearoa today. A Wellington lawyer as well as a writer, his past three novels have all been listed for Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. His novel, Sprigs, won the 2021 Ngaio Marsh award and was described by Kim Hill as “scarily contemporary and realistic story…an extraordinary piece of writing”.

Gnanalingam’s latest book, Slow Down, You’re Here, is fresh off the press and has already gathered glowing reviews. In brief, the novel revolves around the arrival of an old flame into a dead-end marriage. Filled with unexpected twists and turns which propel the plot forwards; this book is a fast paced, page turning domestic thriller. It’s funny, smart and touching with truly relatable characters. As well as this, the novel is also an exploration of serious moral questions, including issues racism and class. In short, it is a fantastic engaging read.

We are thrilled that Brannavan Gnanalingam took time out from his very busy schedule to discuss his new book, and we wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to him. For more information visit http://www.lawrenceandgibson.co.nz/

This interview was done in conjunction with Caffeine and Aspirinthe arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM. It was conducted by host Tanya Ashcroft. You can hear the interview, as well as find a selection of Brannavan Gnanalingam’s work that is available to borrow, below.

 


Slow down you’re here. / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“Kavita is stuck in a dead-end marriage. A parent of two small kids, she is the family’s main breadwinner. An old flame unexpectedly offers her a week away in Waiheke. If she were to go, she’s not sure when – or if – she’d come back.”
( Adapted from catalogue)

 

You should have come here when you were not here / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“The intriguing title of this novel by Wellington writer Brannavan Gnanalingam derives from a statement made by Parisians to their Nazi occupiers in World War II when the Germans expressed being underwhelmed by the attractions of the French capital. This postmodern travelogue tells the lonely tale of Veronica, a thirty-something asexual female journalist from New Zealand who travels to Paris late as a freelance journalist only to find the city indifferent to and from her.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Sprigs / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“It is Saturday afternoon and two boys’ schools are locked in battle for college rugby supremacy. Priya – a fifteen year old who barely belongs – watches from the sidelines. Then it is Saturday night and the team is partying. Priya’s friends have evaporated and she isn’t sure what to do. In the weeks after ‘the incident’ life seems to go on. But when whispers turn to confrontation, the institutions of wealth and privilege circle the wagons.” ( Adapted from Catalogue )

Sodden downstream / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“Thousands flee central Wellington as a far too common ‘once in a century’ storm descends. For their own safety, city workers are told that they must go home early. Sita is a Tamil Sri Lankan refugee living in the Hutt Valley. She’s just had a call from her boss – if she doesn’t get to her cleaning job in the city she’ll lose her contract.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

 

Credit in the straight world / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“‘Credit in the straight world’ charts the fortunes of Frank Tolland as he casts off an ignoble birth to become the singular leader of business and community in small-town New Zealand. Told through the eyes of his mute brother, George, this novel is a sharp and satirical account of a small-town finance company, and sweeps through the dramatic economic changes of the 20th and the 21st centuries.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

A briefcase, two pies and a penthouse : a novel / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“Rachel McManus has just started at the New Zealand Alarm and Response Ministry. One of the few females working there, she is forced to traverse the peculiarities of Wellington bureaucracy, lascivious colleages, and decades of sedimented hierarchy. She has the chance to prove herself by investigating a suspected terrorist, who they fear is radicalising impressionable youth and may carry out an attack on the nation’s capital.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Getting under sail / Gnanalingam, Brannavan
“Morocco to Ghana. Overland. Three New Zealanders. Armed with a guide book and stereotypes. They go being warned of danger, poverty and war by people who had never been there. They end up embroiled in a civil war – but it wasn’t really anything to do with Africa.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Tā Tipene O’Regan: Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year

E tipu e rea mo ngā rā o tō ao
Ko tō ringa ki ngā rākau ā te Pakeha Hei ara mō tō tinana
Ko tō ngākau ki ngā tāonga a ō tīpuna Māori
Hei tikitiki mō tō māhuna
Ko tō wairua ki tō Atua, Nānā nei ngā mea katoa

It is fitting, following the month of April, to celebrate the goals of, and awards bestowed upon Tā Tīpene O’Regan who relentlessly tackled head on, issues that confronted him and commanded his attention – be it a Tiriti claim, race relations, or other take. As his family said he was a man driven by issues rather than people.

“We must remember to remember – you can never have a vision of what you want to be unless you know where you’re from [to avoid] repeating the mistakes of the past.”

In the area of race relations he believes that Māori are here by right of their indigenous status and that all other peoples are here by right of Te Tiriti. He believes that we must continue to evolve and shape our view of New Zealand as we wish it to be. He is a man who did not fight for full reimbursement for all land lost – he had no wish to bankrupt the country in pursuit of an equitable monetary pay-out. The entire value of Treaty settlements over the past quarter of a century would cover superannuation payments for two months.

“I am concerned that in this great intersection of law and history, to which the Treaty and its outcomes have condemned us, we might begin to so devalue our past, that our history and tradition become mere opinion, blown by political winds and fanned by incessant gusts of media opportunism.’

He sought to invest and grow a putea in a way which would lift his people into an entrepreneurial economic future.

Last month Tā Tipene became the Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year. His life and achievements are set out in the following online articles and videos:

Tā Tipene O’Regan on Wikipedia

Tā Tipene O’Regan: a life spent building a bicultural nation, via RNZ

Tā Tipene O’Regan on Kā Huru Manu

Tā Tipene O’Regan announced as Companion at 2019 Research Honours Aotearoa, via The Royal Society

Tā Tipene O’Regan on Indigenous 100

‘Tūtae in my letterbox’: The flak Sir Tipene O’Regan got for leading Waitangi settlement, via Te Ao Māori News

In pulling together details of Tā Tipene’s life, I find it distressing that whānau should become unwitting victims of harassment and behaviour by people demanding their right to freedom of speech (and action) in order to “punish” a parent’s determination to hold fast to a line of firm belief. As Tā Tipene says, in his stories, it was this side of his life which was most hurtful to his family.

Kōrero by Tā Tipene is available on our catalogue:

New myths and old politics : the Waitangi Tribunal and the challenge of tradition / O’Regan, Tipene
“Negotiating a claim before the Waitangi Tribunal can involve troubling challenges to an iwi’s legitimacy, sometimes from unexpected places. In this unique behind-the-scenes account of the negotiation of Ngāi Tahu’s Waitangi Tribunal claim, Sir Tipene O’Regan describes what happened when claims of New Age mysticism attempted to undermine traditional whakapapa and academic scholarship”–Publisher information.” (Catalogue)

New Myths and Old Politics is also available to read for free online via Bridget Williams Books.

 

 

 

Whāia te iti kahurangi, ki te tuohu koe, me he maunga teitei.
Seek the treasure that you value most dearly, if you bow your head, let it be to a lofty mountain.

Enter the ComicFest Multiverse with Beanstack

With ComicFest 2022 hitting the screens on Saturday 7 May, the capital’s comic book fans will be looking for ways to get hyped in advance of joining the veritable galaxy of comic creators we have lined up for the big day. You’re in luck — through our Beanstack platform, we have devised the perfect tool for anyone seeking entry to the ComicFest multiverse.

Visit our Beanstack site to start exploring the ComicFest multiverse!

What is Beanstack?

Beanstack is a digital platform and app that adds a bit of spice to our reading lives by allowing you to earn virtual badges and achievements (and sometimes real-world goodies too!) by reading and participating in activities and challenges. You can sign up for Beanstack at any time in order to:

  • Log reading books and minutes spent reading;
  • Earn reading streaks for reading on consecutive days;
  • Write, draw, or film book reviews;
  • Receive recommendations of books in our catalogue from our librarians and from other readers;
  • Engage in fun reading-related challenges and activities throughout the year to earn achievements and prizes!

While you have access to all of the above features at any time, our creative librarians are always dreaming up ideas for special Challenges to add even more flavour to your reading experience — many of the kids of the city will have experienced this with the Summer Reading Adventure or View Finders challenges already — now it’s the turn of the adults and teens as well!

What is the ComicFest 2022 Beanstack Challenge?

The ComicFest 2022 Beanstack Challenge is our latest offering, designed to get you immersed in the ComicFest 2022 multiverse ahead of the big day. When you sign up, you’ll be challenged to:

  • Explore the unique artistic worlds of our wonderful ComicFest creators — a star-studded cast including such greats as Tea Dragon tamer Kay O’Neill, cartoonist extraordinaire Dylan Horrocks, pro-wrestler and Sāmoan superhero Michel Mulipola, and webcomic megastar Jem Yoshioka;
  • Track down and read all of the books, webcomics, zines, and anthologies our ComicFest artists have created — be warned, this task could keep you occupied for a very long time!
  • Get geared up to submit your finest cartoonish creations for the Comicify Your Life art competition — entries are closed as of 1 May 2022 — but by all means keep on creating! We love to see your work!

Each digital badge you earn puts you in the running to win some awesome ComicFest spot prizes, all while immersing you in the amazing world of New Zealand comics and their creators. The challenge runs until Saturday 21 May, so you can keep exploring even after ComicFest 2022 is done and dusted.

How do I sign up?

Comic fans of any age can register for the ComicFest 2022 Beanstack Challenge by visiting our Beanstack site and hitting the “Register an Individual or Family” button. After that, you’ll be asked if you would like to register for the ComicFest 2022 challenge!

It’s also super easy to use Beanstack on your phone or mobile device. You just need to:

  • Download the Beanstack Tracker app (Google Play) (App Store)
  • Open the app
  • Choose ‘Library’ as the Organisation
  • Search for Wellington City Libraries
  • Touch Sign Up!

So go on and get signed up today — we can’t wait to see you there!

Author interview: Christine Leunens

When Christine Leunens’s latest novel In Amber’s Wake was released recently, it shot to the top of the bestselling charts and was buoyed by a raft of rave reviews. The narrative, an astute and powerful study of personal relationships, is set in the 1980’s and is interwoven with dramatic New Zealand historical events: including the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior, the Springbok Tour and the mass anti-nuclear movement of the time. It’s a page turning story, a display of deep insights into the way in which the human psyche operates.

Christine’s most recent previous novel, Caging Skies, was adapted into the multi-award winning black comedy film JoJo Rabbit directed by Taika Waititi. In Amber’s Wake has already been optioned for movie adaptation by the team that brought us the movie Thelma and Louise, so when the chance to interview Christine Leunens arose we jumped at it.  You can view this specially created interview below.

We wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to Alexandre de Maupeou ,who did the filming and editing. We’d also like to thank Nick Young from The Greenpeace Photo Library and New Zealand National Libraries Archives for permission to use the copyrighted images used in the film. A huge thanks to Christine Leunens herself for her valuable time and this insightful and thoughtful interview.


In Amber’s wake / Leunens, Christine
“Set in New Zealand during the fast-changing, tumultuous 1980s era of the anti-nuclear movement, Springbok rugby tour protests, and the bombing of the Rainbow Warrior, this romantic drama is as unpredictable as it is powerful and heartfelt. Ethan Grieg, a film student, is in love with his close friend Amber Deering, an environmental activist, who lives at her family’s seemingly picture-perfect stud farm. Amber loves Ethan dearly, but not in the way that Ethan longs for. Instead, the man Amber chooses is widower Stuart Reeds, a charming, refined British investor almost two generations older than her. As a Korean war veteran, Stuart is mentally prepared for the long, subtle war that begins between his young rival and himself for Amber’s heart. When secrets become exposed and nothing is as it seems, each will be cornered into committing acts they could have never predicted. This powerful, gripping story leaves in its wake lingering themes on the complex nature of love, social fabric, international politics, and fundamental notions of right and wrong.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Caging skies / Leunens, Christine
“An avid member of the Hitler Youth in 1940s Vienna, Johannes Betzler discovers his parents are hiding a Jewish girl named Elsa behind a false wall in their home. His initial horror turns to interest–then love and obsession. After his parents disappear, Johannes is the only one aware of Elsa’s existence in the house and the only one responsible for her survival. By turns disturbing and blackly comic, haunting and cleverly satirical, Christine Leunens’s captivating and masterful novel–sold in 16 countries and the basis for a major forthcoming film by Taika Waititi ( Thor: Ragnorak, What We Do in the Shadows)–examines this world of truth and lies, laying bare the darkest corners of the human soul.”–Provided by publisher.” (Catalogue)

Jojo Rabbit
“A World War II satire that follows a lonely German boy named Jojo whose world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Aided only by his idiotic imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler, Jojo must confront his blind nationalism.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

He kōtuku rerenga kotahi: remembering Moana Jackson

He Tangata, he tangata, he tangata: of the people, by the people, for the people.
He hōnore, he korōria ki te Atua he maungārongo ki te whenua. He whakaaro pai ki ngā tāngata katoa.

As 29 April 2022 approaches, the effects of Covid19 means that once more Wellington City Libraries will not mark the signing of Te Tiriti in Te Whanganui-a-Tara with a three-pronged kōrero –i.e. a mana whenua summary of past actions, informed discussion of present aspects of te tiriti and then future thoughts as in: where to now.

The burning question for today is he kupu – “co-governance”.

How I wish that we could call upon Moana to offer up a wise, quiet, succinct non-inflammatory explanation, but, alas, he is no longer with us. This month we are totally devastated by his passing, and the many pages of social media commentary have highlighted and refreshed for us his many words of wisdom. Here was a man who quietly touched the hearts of so many people, yet remained absolutely centred on his whānau.

In his kōrero for the launch of “Imagining decolonisation” at Unity Books, he told us how he would approach an upcoming kōrero by going for a long walk, in order to think carefully of the words and ideas he wished to impart. And often his delivery would begin (or end) with a quiet little story involving a grandchild, and a vision for us all through a child’s lens.

Please find below he poroporoakī ki tēnei tangata mīharo.

Moana Jackson: His legacy will endure, via E-Tangata

Moana Jackson was the most articulate, original and forceful intellectual of his generation, via The Guardian

Moana Jackson has left us with the drive to keep fighting, via The Spinoff

Annette Sykes’ eulogy at Moana Jackson’s tangi.

Below is a list of books written by Moana Jackson, which are held in the library’s collection:

Imagining decolonisation.
“Seeks to demystify decolonisation using illuminating, real-life examples. By exploring the impact of colonisation on Māori and non-Māori alike, ‘Imagining decolonisation’ presents a transformative vision of a country that is fairer for all”–Publisher information.” (Catalogue)

Imagining Decolonisation is also available to read for free online via Bridget Williams Books.

Like a beached whale : a consideration of proposed Crown actions over Maori foreshore claims / Jackson, Moana

Backgrounding the Paeroa Declaration / Jackson, Moana

The Maori and the criminal justice system : a new perspective = He whaipaanga hou / Jackson, Moana

We will not fill the void left by this unique man who had the ability to speak so softly with such devastatingly uncompromising words in explanation of Te Whakaputanga me Te Tiriti.

Moe mai ra e te Matua i roto i tō moenga roa, Haere ki Hawaiiki nui, Hawaiiki roa, ki Hawaiiki pamamao te huinga o ngā wairua o te pō, moe mai ra.

¡Día del idioma Español! Spanish Language Day

¡Qué bueno! Saturday 23 April is UN Spanish Language Day; a day which is celebrated around the world. There are over 530 million Spanish speakers worldwide and here at WCL, we have a huge collection of books in Spanish; over 700 items across our branches!

To browse our full collection of Spanish language books, go to our catalogue and click ‘Advanced’ at the far right of the search bar. From here, select ‘Call Number’ from the top drop-down menu and enter ‘Spanish’. Hit the ‘Advanced Search’ button and all of our Spanish language items will appear for you to browse, reserve and borrow!

Below is a selection of our newest Spanish language items, as well as some of our librarians’ favourite books by Spanish-speaking writers that have been translated into English. ¡Disfruta leyendo! Happy reading!

Del aire al aire / Guedea, Rogelio
“Meditaciones acerca de los limites entre la realidad y los suenos, estos micro-relatos crean un mundo imaginario que aparenta ser mas autentico que el mundo fisico. Vidas se esfuman en suenos y pensamientos se cristalizan en el curso de una vida a traves de estos cuentos.”” (Catalogue)

 

 

Violeta / Allende, Isabel
“Violeta viene al mundo un tormentoso día de 1920, siendo la primera niña de una familia de cinco bulliciosos hermanos. Desde el principio su vida estará marcada por acontecimientos extraordinarios, pues todavía se sienten las ondas expansivas de la Gran Guerra cuando la gripe española llega a las orillas de su país sudamericano natal, casi en el momento exacto de su nacimiento. En una carta dirigida a una persona a la que ama por encima de todas las demás, Violeta rememora devastadores desengaños amorosos y romances apasionados, momentos de pobreza y también de prosperidad, pérdidas terribles e inmensas alegrías.” (adapted from catalogue)

Habitaciones compartidas / Guedea, Rogelio
“Roque, profesor de literatura hispana en Nueva Zelanda, vive con su mujer e hijos y lejos de su México natal una rutina tranquila, incluso monótona. Un buen día recibe un correo electrónico de Diego Valente, contratado por la misma universidad, quien le pide consejo dada su inminente llegada a la ciudad, a fin de aclimatarse al entorno. Diego es también mexicano y viene acompañado de la encantadora Lía, su mujer, y sus dos hijos menores. Para Roque y los suyos este encuentro se antoja providencial, pues es la primera familia de compatriotas que fijará su residencia en el mismo lugar en el que viven desde hace ya siete años, lo que traerá un renovado aire a sus vidas. Sin embargo, lo que en un principio se adivina un futuro halagüeño, poco a poco se tornará para ambas parejas en un escenario cercano a la pesadilla…” (adapted from catalogue)

Lituma en los Andes / Vargas Llosa, Mario
“Ambientada en un remoto pueblo de montaña, Lituma en los Andes comienza como una novela policíaca sobre la desaparición de tres lugareños. El cabo Lituma y su ayudante Tomás sospechan de Sendero Luminoso, la organización guerrillera que viene sembrando el terror en el Perú. Pero la intriga adquiere visos inesperados cuando se descubren crueles prácticas ancestrales en la zona, y la narración va ganando dimensiones conforme las pesquisas se alternan con los recuerdos íntimos de los protagonistas. Con un virtuoso manejo de la trama, la psicología y los géneros, Mario Vargas Llosa ofrece al cabo una profunda meditación sobre la sociedad peruana y sus males históricos.”–Page [4] of cover.” (Catalogue)

In the time of the butterflies : a novel / Alvarez, Julia
“It is November 25, 1960, and three beautiful sisters have been found near their wrecked Jeep at the bottom of a 150-foot cliff on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. The official state newspaper reports their deaths as accidental. It does not mention that a fourth sister lives. Nor does it explain that the sisters were among the leading opponents of Gen. Rafael Leonidas Trujillo s dictatorship. It doesn’t have to. Everybody knows of Las Mariposas The Butterflies. In this extraordinary novel, the voices of all four sisters Minerva, Patria, Maria Teresa, and the survivor, Dede speak across the decades to tell their own stories, from hair ribbons and secret crushes to gunrunning and prison torture, and to describe the everyday horrors of life under Trujillo’s rule. Through the art and magic of Julia Alvarez s imagination, the martyred Butterflies live again in this novel of courage and love, and the human cost of political oppression. ” (Catalogue)

Chronicle of a death foretold / García Márquez, Gabriel
“Santiago Nasar is brutally murdered in a small town by two brothers. All the townspeople knew it was going to happen – including the victim. But nobody did anything to prevent the killing. Twenty seven years later, a man arrives in town to try and piece together the truth from the contradictory testimonies of the townsfolk.” (Catalogue)

 

Like water for chocolate : a novel in monthly installments, with recipes, romances, and home remedies / Esquivel, Laura
“A #1 bestseller in Mexico in 1990, this charming, imaginative, and just plain fun novel of family life in turn-of-the-century Mexico employs a winning blend of poignant romance and bittersweet wit.” (Catalogue)

 

 

The tunnel / Sabato, Ernesto
“Infamous for the murder of Maria Iribarne, the artist Juan Pablo Castel is now writing a detailed account of his relationship with the victim from his prison cell- obsessed from the first moment he saw her examining one of his paintings, Castel had become fixated on her over the next months and fantasized over how they might meet again. When he happened upon her one day, a relationship was formed which swiftly convinced him of their mutual love. But Castel’s growing paranoia would lead him to destroy the one thing he truly cared about . . . ” (adapted from catalogue)

The house on Mango Street / Cisneros, Sandra
“The bestselling coming-of-age classic, acclaimed by critics, beloved by readers of all ages, taught in schools and universities alike, and translated around the world–from the winner of the 2019 PEN/Nabokov Award for Achievement in International Literature. The House on Mango Street is the remarkable story of Esperanza Cordero, a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Told in a series of vignettes-sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous-Sandra Cisneros’ masterpiece is a classic story of childhood and self-discovery. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers.” (Catalogue)

The postman : a novel / Skármeta, Antonio
“The unforgettable inspiration for the Academy Award-winning Il Postino, this classic novel established Antonio Skarmeta’s reputation as “one of the most representative authors of the post-boom generation in contemporary Latin American letters”. Boisterously funny and passionate, The Postman tells of young love ignited by the poetry of Pablo Neruda. Set in the colourful, ebullient years preceding the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile, the book has been translated into nearly twenty-five languages around the world.” – Fishpond

Join us online for ComicFest 2022 – Saturday 7 May!

ComicFest logo

Join us online on Saturday 7 May for this fantastic – and totally free – national celebration of all things comics-related in New Zealand! Follow the livestream on the day on our YouTube channel, and register your interest in ComicFest at the link below and we’ll send you updates and reminders ahead of the day.

Register your interest in ComicFest

ComicFest this year features a whole galaxy of Aotearoa’s finest graphic artists and authors, and we’re so excited to share the programme with you! A big thank you to our all-important sponsors – National Library, Graphic comics, Gecko Press, Unity Books and Wellington Zinefest.

For more information on all the events at ComicFest, scroll further down the page for our complete programme, but expect panel discussions, presentations, workshops and loads of fun!


Full ComicFest 2022 Programme


Saturday 7 May

ComicFest 2022 logo

9 – 9:15am | Welcome to ComicFest 2022!

A welcome and overview of ComicFest, our exciting guests and options for streaming. We’re so excited to bring ComicFest 2022 to you! Meet your hosts and hear about what we have planned for the day.

Kay's comic self-portrait

9:15 – 10:15am | Meet Everybody’s Favourite Axolotl, Dewdrop — with Creator Kay O’Neill

Kids (and big kids) are welcome to join the Eisner and Harvey Award-winning illustrator and graphic novelist Kay O’Neill (author and illustrator of The Tea Dragon Society series) to help create friends old and new for their character, Dewdrop the Axolotl.

Suggested for: ages 4+

10:15 – 10:30am | Announcing the ComicFest drawing competition winners

Join us as we announce the winners of our ComicFest drawing competition!

Winners will be announced for the four age-based categories: 0–8, 9–12, 13–17 and 18+

Michel's comic self-portrait

10:30 – 11:30am | How to Draw Heroes — a Masterclass with Michel Mulipola

A how-to masterclass with Michel Mulipola who will show you he goes about drawing and creating heroes. Crack the code of superhero creation in this live workshop!

Michel Mulipola is a Samoan comic book artist who has two big passions in life — comics and wrestling — and who, when he gets the chance, likes to combine the two. His works often feature Pasifika wrestling heroes and recent historical heroes.

Michel will demonstrate the tools he uses to digitally create whilst drawing live (and live streaming) on the big screen! Bring pen and paper, and join in with Michel as he provides story-telling tips, panel composition ideas and illustration guidance.

Suggested for: ages 8+

Jem's comic self-portrait

11:45am – 12:45pm | Weekly Webcomics — Tips and Tricks with Jem Yoshioka

Join Jem Yoshioka, the talented webcomic artist behind Circuits and Veins and Folk Remedy as she takes you through the tools of the trade, and provides tricks and tips for getting your webcomic online.

Photo of Jonathan

12:50 – 1:20pm | Storytelling with Jonathan King

Jonathan King until very recently was best known as the acclaimed film director of films such as the hugely successful dark horror comedy Black Sheep and the remake of the NZ Children’s classic film Under the Mountain starring Sam Neill.

But that all changed when he released his first ever graphic novel in 2020 — The Inkberg Enigma. Aimed at children eight and up, it’s hugely enjoyable for adults too.

Come along and hear more from Jonathan about storytelling — from all his different creator perspectives.

1:30 – 2:30pm | New Voices, New Perspectives — a Panel Discussion

Featuring Mary Guo, Tara Black, Jem Yoshioka, and chaired by Sam Orchard

The world of graphic art is changing at an amazingly rapid pace — a veritable revolution has been happening in recent years. Developments have included: new definitions of what comprises a graphic work, new platforms with global reach for people to view your work and new high-tech tools to create your works.

This panel features some of the New Zealand artists at the vanguard of these changes, discussing the new opportunities for artists, the challenges inherent in these changes, and — finally — how artists go about taking full advantage of these new frontiers.

Giselle's comic self-portrait

2:45 – 3:45pm | Giselle Clarkson — from commission to ComicFest artwork

Once you get a commission, how do you go about generating creative ideas that meet that brief? Indeed, how do you get a commission in the first place? And what do briefs usually entail?

All will be revealed in this event with the incredibly talented graphic illustrator Giselle Clarkson.

Giselle’s illustrative works include: The Gobbledegook Book: A Joy Cowley Anthology, Egg and Spoon: An Illustrated Cookbook, Secret World of Butterflies and Hazel and the Snails.

Suggested for: ages 8+

Dylan's comic self-portrait

3:50 – 4:10pm | Dylan Horrocks — Comics in New Zealand and Memoir

Dylan Horrocks is a cartoonist best known for his graphic novel Hicksville and his scripts for the Batgirl comic book series. His works are published by the University of Auckland student magazine Craccum, Australia’s Fox Comics, the current affairs magazine New Zealand Listener from 1995 to 1997, the Canadian publishers Black Eye Comics and Drawn and Quarterly, and the American publishers Vertigo and Fantagraphics Books. He currently serialises new work online at Hicksville Comics.

Hear what Dylan has to say about comics in New Zealand and memoir.

Sarah's comic self-portrait

4:15 – 4:45pm | Sarah Laing — Comics and Memoir

Sarah is a Wellington-based writer and illustrator who has had novels, short stories and the graphic memoir Mansfield and Me published. Her collection of comics from the past ten years, Let Me Be Frank, was published by VUP in late 2019. She also the co-editor of Three Words: An Anthology of Aotearoa/NZ Women’s Comics and has illustrated a number of children’s books.

Hear what Sarah has to say on comics and memoir.

4:45 – 5pm | ComicFest wrap-up and thank yous!

And that’s a wrap from us for 2022! Hear all our thank yous to our wonderful guests, and to you, our very excellent audience. We hope you enjoyed ComicFest 2022!

Visiting the library under Orange settings

As of Thursday 14 April 2022, all libraries in the Wellington City Libraries’ network remain open under Orange settings of the COVID-19 Protection Framework, with masks required.

To keep everyone safe please:

  • wear a mask unless you have an exemption
  • follow any guidance from our staff or signs
  • stay home if you’re unwell, or someone in your household has tested positive for Covid-19
  • be kind – library staff are doing their best to offer our full range of services and facilities

At Orange, programming can be run. However, because staffing shortages are still ongoing, we won’t look to restart programming until staffing is back at a normal level.

Check the Event Calendar and our social media for any updates.
If you’re unwell, please stay home until you’ve recovered.

Event calendar

The Hive Makerspace at Johnsonville Library in Waitohi has re-opened for visits. They are also accepting Laser cutter and 3D Printing jobs over email. More details on our Makerspace page.

The Hive Makerspace

All library members can continue to access a huge range of online resources via our eLibrary – this includes eBooks, magazines, movies, and online courses.

Answers to frequently asked questions about library services under Orange settings can be found on our COVID faqs.

COVID faqs

If you have any queries, please contact Wellington City Libraries by calling 04 801 4040 during office hours or email us at enquiries@wcl.govt.nz. Alternatively, you can message us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Email us at enquiries@wcl.govt.nz

Big Library Read: Questlove’s Music is history

Music is History Big Library Read

 

This month’s Big Library Read, Libby’s “global ebook club” , showcases his fourth book called Music is history. In Music is history, Questlove uses his encyclopaedic knowledge of music and history as a lens to examine American history. Specifically, he examines how specific tracks and albums encapsulate certain moments in time in American history over the past fifty years. Questlove is in a truly unique position to tell this history; he’s part of the story and a student of both music and the wider reaches of cultural history. Big Library Read is an opportunity for library users around the world to read the same digital title at the same time. So, from April 4th to April 18th, you can participate in this global ebook club, without any wait lists or holds.

Questlove is one of the most high profile and well-known musician/ producers around. as well as being an author, music journalist, and award-winning  film director. A self-confessed obsessive music crate digger and music historian, over the course of the last thirty years or so he has played a key role in the hip hop and sampling scene. He’s also gone on to produce countless artists, such Amy Winehouse and Al Green to name but two.

In Music is history, Questlove selects tracks from his birth in 1971 to the present day to illustrate how music and American history reflect each other. It is a hugely informative and entertaining work, and the tracks Questlove selects are wide ranging, eclectic and fascinating. They really demonstrate his formidable knowledge. It’s all done in a highly readable and personable style, certainly a must read for music buffs and cultural historians.

To learn more about the Big Library Read, follow this link. You can borrow Music is history via ebook here or audiobook here

To give you a flavour of the book, below is just a tiny selection of the albums containing some of the tracks Questlove uses to illustrate his points.

The head on the door [deluxe] / Cure
“Contents CD1: Inbetween days — Kyoto song — The blood — Six different ways — Push — The baby screams — Close to me — A night like this — Screw — Sinking.CD2 (Rarities 1984-1985): Notes Originally released in 1985 – includes bonus disc.” ( Adapted from Catalogue )

 

It takes a nation of millions to hold us back [3 CD]. / Public Enemy
“It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, a record that rewrote the rules of what hip-hop could do. That’s not to say the album is without precedent, since what’s particularly ingenious about the album is how it reconfigures things that came before into a startling, fresh, modern sound. Public Enemy used the template Run-D.M.C. created of a rap crew as a rock band, then brought in elements of free jazz, hard funk, even musique concrète, via their producing team, the Bomb Squad, creating a dense, ferocious sound unlike anything that came before.  ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Maggot brain. / Funkadelic
“It starts with a crackle of feedback shooting from speaker to speaker and a voice intoning, “Mother Earth is pregnant for the third time, for y’all have knocked her up” and talking about rising “above it all or drown in my own sh*t.” This could only have been utterly bizarre back in 1971 and it’s no less so decades later; though the Mothership was well on its way already, Maggot Brain really helped it take off. ~ Ned Raggett” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Parade : music from the motion picture Under the cherry moon / Prince
“Undaunted by the criticism Around the World in a Day received, Prince continued to pursue his psychedelic inclinations on Parade, which also functioned as the soundtrack to his second film, Under the Cherry Moon. Originally conceived as a double album, Parade has the sprawling feel of a double record, even if it clocks in around 45 minutes. — If it had been expanded to a double album, Parade would have equaled the subsequent Sign ‘o’ the Times, but as it stands, it’s an astonishingly rewarding near-miss. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The Police. / Police (Musical group)
“To coincide with their 30th anniversary reunion tour in 2007 the Police released the anthology The Police, the first two-CD retrospective ever assembled on the group. They may not have had a double compilation to their credit, but they had single discs and box sets, which may raise the question of whether they need a set like this — and the answer is yes, but this set falls just a bit short of being the definitive Police double disc. At only 28 tracks, this feels a little too slim.  ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Creative quest / Questlove
“Questlove – musician, bandleader, designer, producers, culinary entrepreneur, professor, and all-round cultural omnivore – draws on a life-time experience to offer insights into how to build the best creative life, and how to let the best creative life build you. Questlove has worked with or around hundreds of other artists, and engaged in dialogue with them regarding the creative process, whether in person or from an appreciation of their work: musicians like D’Angelo and Björk, filmmakers like Ava DuVernay and Mike Birbiglia, comedians, chefs, designers, writers, and more.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Mo’ meta blues : the world according to Questlove / Questlove
“Mo’ Meta Blues is a punch-drunk memoir in which Everyone’s Favorite Questlove tells his own story while tackling some of the lates, the greats, the fakes, the philosophers, the heavyweights, and the true originals of the music world. He digs deep into the album cuts of his life and unearths some pivotal moments in black art, hip hop, and pop culture.”–Book jacket.” (Catalogue)

 

Soul train : the music, dance, and style of a generation / Questlove
“From Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson of the award-winning hip-hop group the Roots, comes this vibrant book commemorating the legacy of Soul Train—the cultural phenomenon that launched the careers of artists such as Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson 5, Whitney Houston, Lenny Kravitz, LL Cool J, and Aretha Franklin. Questlove reveals the remarkable story of the captivating program, and his text is paired with more than 350 photographs of the show’s most memorable episodes and the larger-than-life characters who defined it: the great host Don Cornelius, the extraordinary musicians, and the people who lived the phenomenon from dance floor. Gladys Knight contributed a foreword to this incredible volume. Nick Cannon contributed the preface.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.

Dr Rangi Matamua in conversation about Māori astronomy and star lore


Photo used with the kind permission of ‘The Prime Minister’s Science Prizes Secretariat’; all rights reserved.

Dr Rangi Matamua (Tūhoe) is one of Aotearoa’s top science communicators, a professor at the University of Waikato and an expert in the fields of Māori astronomy and star lore, as well as Māori language development, research and revitalisation. Not only is he an expert in these fields but he loves to talk about them and travels extensively throughout the country giving public lectures about Matariki and Māori astronomy.

Dr Matamua received the Prime Minister’s Science Prize and won the 2020 Callaghan Medal, as well as being awarded the Fellowship of the Royal Society Te Apārangi in recognition that his work “has revolutionised understandings of Māori astronomy, and in particular Matariki”.

Dr Matamua has been critical of the way Western scientific astronomy  belittles or ignores traditional Māori knowledge. One of his future plans to address this imbalance is to create a Māori observatory, based on a traditional observatory but also using modern technology and knowledge. He is also the author of several excellent books on these subjects.

This interview was done in conjunction with Caffeine and Aspirin, the arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM and was conducted by host Tanya Ashcroft.

We are thrilled that Dr Matamua took time out from his very busy schedule to talk to us about his new book, his career, and loads of other fascinating scientific topics, and we wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to him. For more information visit https://livingbythestars.co.nz/.

Dr Matamua’s books are available to borrow from the library; see details below.

Matariki : te whetū tapu o te tau / Matamua, Rangi
“In midwinter, Matariki rises in the pre-dawn sky, and its observation is celebrated with incantations on hilltops at dawn, balls, exhibitions, dinners and a vast number of events. The Matariki tradition has been re-established, and its regeneration coincides with a growing interest in Māori astronomy. Still, there remain some unanswered questions about how Matariki was traditionally observed. What is Matariki? Why did Māori observe Matariki? How did Māori traditionally celebrate Matariki? When and how should Matariki be celebrated? This book seeks answers to these questions and explores what Matariki was in a traditional sense so it can be understood and celebrated in our modern society.”(Adapted from Catalogue)

Matariki : the star of the year / Matamua, Rangi
“In midwinter, Matariki rises in the pre-dawn sky, and its observation is celebrated with incantations on hilltops at dawn, balls, exhibitions, dinners and a vast number of events. The Matariki tradition has been re-established, and its regeneration coincides with a growing interest in Māori astronomy. Still, there remain some unanswered questions about how Matariki was traditionally observed. These include: What is Matariki? Why did Māori observe Matariki? How did Māori traditionally celebrate Matariki? When and how should Matariki be celebrated? There has been a resurgence of interest in and celebration of Matariki, and this book provides accessible information about its meaning and significance, how to locate Matariki and when, traditional customs and knowledge regarding Matariki and current-day practices”( Adapted from Catalogue)

Ngā kete mātauranga : Māori scholars at the research interface
“In this beautiful and transformative book, 24 Maori academics share their personal journeys, revealing what being Māori has meant for them in their work. Their perspectives provide insight for all New Zealanders into how mātauranga is positively influencing the Western-dominated disciplines of knowledge in the research sector. It is a shameful fact, says co-editor Jacinta Ruru in her introduction to Ngā Kete Mātauranga, that in 2020, only about 5 percent of academic staff at universities in Aotearoa New Zealand are Māori. Tertiary institutions have for the most part been hostile places for Indigenous students and staff, and this book is an important call for action. ‘It is well past time that our country seriously commits to decolonising the tertiary workforce, curriculum and research agenda,’ writes Professor Ruru.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Author Interview: Poet, novelist & short story writer Maggie Rainey-Smith

Amongst many other things Maggie Rainey-Smith is a poet, novelist, and short story writer. And just recently Maggie released her latest collection of poetry called Formica.

Formica is an honest and humorous collection of poems written in an unsentimental fashion that both speaks of Maggie herself and her individual history but also the wider issues that envelope individual lives. The poems in the collection are rooted in the 1950s, avoiding the pitfalls of nostalgia, the poems instead give the reader a more precise and unsentimental look at life.

The collection moves from youth to warrior crone and also pays homage to love in its various forms.

Maggie uses as her raw material the lives of all women of her generation –  “lives too often defined by their fertility and kitchen appliances when there was fun and fulfilment to be had elsewhere. Not that Maggie doesn’t adore her Kenwood mixer, but it lines up with abiding friendships, granddaughters, travel, sex and the joy of words.”

She is a remarkable talent and when the opportunity to interview her about Formica arose, we leapt at it. This interview with  was done in conjunction with the Caffeine and Aspirin arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM and was conducted by Caffeine and Aspirin host, Tanya Ashcroft. Below is the podcast of that interview for your enjoyment:

We are thrilled that Maggie took time out from her very busy schedule to talk to us about Formica, her life, and her writing career. We wish to extend our heartfelt thanks.

Content warning: interview includes adult themes

Maggie’s books are available to borrow from the library.

About turns: a novel / Rainey-Smith, Maggie
“Irene has a secret. It slips out inadvertently during book club when the wine has been flowing too freely. Her teenage years as a marching girl are not something she had wanted her friend Ferrida to know about. She’s always wanted Ferrida’s approval, for her friendship is as important and fraught as the one with Paula, when they marched together all those years ago. But friends don’t necessarily march to the same beat, and Irene finds it hard to keep step. ABOUT TURNS, with its humorous insights into New Zealand women and their allegiances, will have you and your friends laughing in unison.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Turbulence / Rainey-Smith, Maggie
“Adam is fortyish, coasting along and relatively content while his glamorous partner, Louise, takes centre stage. But half a lifetime ago, his aspirations were higher and he was certain about the future he’d share with Judy. When an unexpected invitation arrives, uncomfortable truths resurface and the secrets of the past spill out. How will Adam manage to attend a reunion in the company of both Louise and Judy – not to mention stepfatherhood and a state of siege at work? ” (Catalogue)

Daughters of Messene / Rainey-Smith, Maggie
“Your history, Artemis, is full of female warriors.” Artemis has the name of a goddess, but she has trouble living up to it. Instead she usually just runs away. She’s running now … away from the married man she’s been seeing, and the Greek community in New Zealand who think they know what’s best, and into the arms of family in the Peloponnese that she’s never met. She carries her mother’s ashes and an ipod with recordings, which bit by bit tell the shocking story of what happened to Artemis’ grandmother during the Greek Civil War.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Endometriosis Awareness Month: Resources from the catalogue

Fine line illustration of bodies


It’s March and that means it’s Endometriosis Awareness Month.  Endometriosis is an inflammatory condition where endometrial tissue (the type of tissue in the lining of the uterus) grows elsewhere in the body. Even though 1 in 10 people with a uterus suffer endometriosis, very little is known about it and many cases go undiagnosed. It can be extremely painful, even debilitating, and a lot of sufferers find themselves struggling to find information on the condition.

If you are looking for information on endometriosis, we can help!  We have several resources in our collection, here are some you could give a try:

For more help with information and resources on endometriosis, go to Endometriosis New Zealand.


Endometriosis : natural and medical solutions / Cooke, Kaz

“Endometriosis a fun to read yet sensible explanation of the self-care, natural therapies and medical solutions for managing endometriosis.” (Catalogue)

 

 

Endometriosis : the complete reference for taking charge of your health / Ballweg, Mary Lou

“Bestselling health authors present must-have information for managing endometriosis. Endometriosis is a serious disease associated with pain, immune dysfunction, infertility, cancer, and autoimmune diseases that can be managed only through active, informed decision making. Developed by the Endometriosis Association, Endometriosis provides new information on treatments and lifestyle changes that gives people with endometriosis and their families the tools they need to successfully manage the disease. This authoritative guide contains groundbreaking new discoveries on endometriosis and its relationship to autoimmune problems, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and other poorly understood diseases. ” (Adapted from Catalogue)

How to endo : a guide to surviving and thriving with endometriosis / Hustwaite, Bridget

“After years of dismissive doctors and misinformation, Bridget Hustwaite finally received a diagnosis for her intensely heavy periods, pulsing headaches and the excruciating abdominal pain that makes her ovaries feel like they are on fire. She has endometriosis – hard to pronounce, hard to diagnose and even harder to live with. Two excision surgeries and one thriving endo Instagram community later, Bridget knows firsthand how much personal research and self-advocating endo sufferers have to do just to have their pain acknowledged. With her trademark enthusiasm, Bridget has blended her own experience with a raft of tips and strategies from health experts and endo warriors to help you thrive whenever you can, and survive on days when you just can’t.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Explaining endometriosis / Henderson, Lorraine

“The most comprehensive handbook of up-to-date advice and information for sufferers of Endometriosis, a debilitating disease which affects approximately one in ten people with a uterus.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

 

Private parts : how to really live with endometriosis / Thom, Eleanor

“Like 1 in 10 people with a uterus in the UK, Eleanor Thom has endometriosis and she thinks that it’s time to talk a bit more about our private parts. Part memoir, part guide book and part survival guide, Private Parts retraces Eleanor’s own journey with endometriosis, offering readers practical, down-to-earth and friendly advice covering everything from what actually happens in an internal exam, to finding the right specialist for you, the perfect post-op wardrobe and to why you should look to Frida Kahlo for inspiration in your darkest moments. Written for those looking to live well with their endometriosis and for those looking for help to understand the disease, this is a call to action for people to speak up about an illness which is still so misunderstood. Features exclusive interviews with Hilary Mantel, Paulette Edwards, Lena Dunham as well as insights from experts in the field.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Beating endo : a patient’s treatment plan for endometriosis / Orbuch, Iris

“Endometriosisis an inflammatory response that results when tissue is found outside the uterus, thereby initiating a disease process and an array of maladies accrue. Dr Iris Orbuch. is a surgeon and Amy Stein,a physical therapist, have seen endo’s harm and agony up close and personal and they have created this self-care guide for people with endometriosis about how to deal with their endometriosis in order to: 1) Avoid surgery (if at all possible), 2) What to do before surgery (should they absolutely need it); and how 3) To live and what to do post-surgery – so that the women afflicted by this disease, can reclaim their lives.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Vagina problems : endometriosis, painful sex, and other taboo topics / Parker, Lara

“In April 2014, Deputy Editorial Director at BuzzFeed Lara Parker opened up to the world in an article on the website: she suffers from endometriosis. And beyond that? She let the whole world know that she wasn’t having any sex, as sex was excruciatingly painful. Less than a year before, she received not only the diagnosis of endometriosis, but also a diagnosis of pelvic floor dysfunction, vulvodynia, vaginismus, and vulvar vestibulitis. Combined, these debilitating conditions have wreaked havoc on her life, causing excruciating pain throughout her body since she was fourteen years old. These are her Vagina Problems. It was five years before Lara learned what was happening to her body. Five years of doctors insisting she just had ‘bad period cramps,’ or implying her pain was psychological[…]With candid revelations about her vaginal physical therapy, dating as a straight woman without penetrative sex, coping with painful seizures while at the office, diet and wardrobe malfunctions when your vagina hurts all the time, and the depression and anxiety of feeling unloved, Lara tackles it all in Vagina Problems: Endometriosis, Painful Sex, and Other Taboo Topics with courage, wit, love, and a determination to live her best life” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Endo Unfiltered: How to take charge of your endometriosis and PCOS / Barnett, Erin

“The real life guide to endometriosis and PCOS (from someone who’s living it) from international reality TV star and health advocate Erin Barnett.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

 

Next steps on proposal for removing overdue library fines

You would have heard the great news that we are proposing to remove fines for overdue library items from 1 July 2022 in the upcoming draft Annual Plan. There are a few steps to take before this may become a reality.

Step one – gaining audit approval
We are updating the draft Annual Plan to reflect this change with the updated revenue figures (to remove the current and projected overdue fines) which then goes to external auditors for approval. If they approve the draft 2022/23 Annual Plan we go to step two…asking the public for their views!

Step two – consult with the public
Between Friday 1 April to Monday 2 May we will asking people for their views on the fine removal, and a range of other changes proposed in the draft Annual Plan. We will share information about how you can do this through both the Libraries and Council channels before the consultation process opens.

Step three – Annual Plan is confirmed
We will provide any feedback to Council who will consider this proposal, alongside others and then confirm what will or won’t be included 2022/23 Annual Plan.

If the proposal to remove overdues fines is adopted:

  • no overdue fines would be charged from 1 July 2022 onwards
  • we would wipe any outstanding overdue fines on peoples’ library cards as at 30 June 2022. This would not cover:
    • any debt which has been sent to an external debt collector
    • borrowing fees, such as hiring Bestseller items or DVDs/CDs, which would still apply.
  • we would continue to send reminders to people to return items that are due or overdue.
  • library cards would continue to be blocked once items have been overdue well past the due date.
  • to continue using your card between now and 1 July 2022, please pay any fines, otherwise your card will be blocked according to current criteria (if you owe over $50).

How to have your say on the proposal
We will share information about how you can do this through both our Libraries and Council social media and websites prior to and during the consultation process opening. We expect this will be towards late March as the consultation process runs from  Friday 1 April to Monday 2 May.

If you have any questions in the meantime, you can call us on (04) 801 4040 or email enquiries@wcl.govt.nz.

Author interview: Physicist and science writer Laurie Winkless

Image of the Laurie Winkless with her new book Sticky.


Laurie Winkless is a physicist and science writer. She has contributed to Forbes Magazine and worked with both the Royal Society and The Naked Scientists. She has a BSc in Physics with Astrophysics from Trinity College Dublin, has worked at NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre and has done some impressive mahi with the Materials Team at the National Physical Laboratory, focussing on thermoelectric energy harvesting!  She has also researched the use of nanomaterials in the space industry for the European Space Agency.

Her first book, Science, and the City: The Mechanics Behind the Metropolis, explains the science behind aspects of urban living, including skyscrapers and subways. She recently took some time out from her busy schedule to talk to us about her latest book, Sticky, which is an exploration of the amazing world of surface science.

This interview with Laurie Winkless was done in conjunction with the Caffeine and Aspirin arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM. Below is the podcast of that interview for your enjoyment:

We are thrilled that Winkless took time out from her very busy schedule to talk to us about her new book, her career, and loads of other fascinating scientific topics. We wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to her.

 For more information on Laurie, visit https://www.lauriewinkless.com/

 And for more information on her new book Sticky, visit HERE. 

Both of Laurie’s books are available to borrow from the library.

 

Sticky: The Secret Science Of Surfaces / Winkless, Laurie
“In Sticky, physicist Laurie Winkless brings the amazing world of surface science to the popular science market. Using her characteristic fun and relaxed tone, she introduces us to the glues, adhesives and textures that rule and improve stickiness to give plants and animals an advantage, as well as uncovering the physics behind our sense of touch.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

 

Science and the city : the mechanics behind the metropolis / Winkless, Laurie
“A window into the hidden science and engineering that are the backbone and lifeblood of the city, now and in the future.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Service changes to help everyone get through

covid19 logo

covid19 logo

Like the rest of Aotearoa, we’re making a few changes to continue serving you, while taking steps to protect everyone from COVID-19.

To help people who are isolating or working from home:

  • we are extending the time for picking up reserved items to 14 days
  • you can check whether you can renew items that are due, by logging into your library account or checking the library app on your phone
  • get in touch about any loans or fines on your card so we can help – call (04) 801 4040 or email enquiries@wcl.govt.nz
  • don’t forget you can access a huge range of books, magazines, newspapers, music and movies online through our eLibrary
  • keep the young ones entertained using the storytimes on Facebook and YouTube, and the blogs or activities for teenagers on our website.

Unfortunately, there will be times over the next few weeks when our libraries may have to close at short notice while they get a deep clean, or because some of our staff are isolating at home. This also means it’s likely to take a little longer for items to reach the library shelves.

Before visiting your local branch library, check our current opening hours on Facebook, Twitter, our website or by calling (04) 801 4040.

Thank you for your understanding as we get through this together.

Thank you Pōneke for the cans you donated!

Our ‘Cans for Fines’ campaign ran for the whole month of February and was a great success! We received 1309 cans in total,  brought by over 200 Wellington City Libraries’ customers.

All cans were donated to Wellington City Mission, especially for their Social Supermarket. This supermarket is based in Newtown, and is open and free to anyone in Wellington in need of some extra help.

 

With the extra pressure and challenges that Omicron brings, ‘Cans for Fines’ came at just the right time for us. The much-needed cans have helped to keep the shelves of our Social Supermarket stocked and we can continue to support those that need us. We were thrilled with the response and support of the Wellington community. From all of us at The Wellington City Mission, thank you!”

Kath Bier, Wellington City Mission

Thank you Pōneke for taking part in this campaign, your cans helped a lot of people.

Interview: Legendary musician David Long

Photo of David Long against a light yellow circle and his latest album art.


David Long is a legend in the New Zealand music scene. He started his musical career performing in the Braille Collective, in bands such as Six Volts and Jungle, and was a founding member of The Mutton Birds with Don McGlashan. These days, Long can be found working in a very wide spectrum of musical activities.

Long did compositional music for contemporary dance pieces working extensively with choreographer Douglas Wright. He works on the musical, soundscape side for a whole host of television and film projects; he has worked with Peter Jackson and has played some part in every one of his film for the last twenty years, including Lord of the Rings trilogy.  Long even worked with Brian Eno on the soundtrack to The Lovely Bones.

He also does a lot of production work, having produced many of New Zealand’s finest musicians and ,recently, doing production work for the recently formed Oro record label.

Long has worked on a wide range of collaborative projects, such as with Richard Nunn and Natalia Mann on the album Utterance. He has also just released a new work of his own, titled Ash and Bone. He has also won several silver scroll APRA awards, amongst many other musical accolades. Basically, in musical terms , Long has excelled at everything and so when we got the chance to interview him, we jumped at it.

Coming soon, we have an exclusive filmed interview with Long where we talk all things musical. For now, to whet your appetite, we recently had the pleasure of interviewing Long in conjunction with the Caffeine and Aspirin on Radioactive FM about his new album, Ash and Bone, and various other aspects of his career. Below is the podcast of that interview for your enjoyment:

We are thrilled that Long has taken time out from his very busy schedule to talk to us about his new release, his career, and all things musical. We extend our heartfelt thanks. Keep an eye out for our filmed interview coming soon!

For more information on David, visit https://www.davidlongnz.com/

And for more information on Rattle records, visit https://rattle.co.nz/


Envy of angels [1 CD] / Mutton Birds
“Envy of Angels could have been recorded ten years earlier considering its invocation of the new south — in particular the moodiness of Dumptruck — not to mention similarities to more commercial guitar rock of the same period […] Perhaps it isn’t a coincidence that Hugh Jones, who also worked with Dumptruck, produced Envy of Angels. He renders the Mutton Birds’ guitar strum and jangle in more solemn than bright tones, which suits the sometimes poetic lyrics and unusual chord progressions. ~ Greg Adams” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Ash and bone. / Long, David
“Musicians David Long, synthesisers, banjo, electronics, electric guitar ; Carolyn Mills, harp ; Andrew Jarvis, tuba ; Mark Carter, trumpet ; Rachel Vernon, bass clarinet ; Pat Barry, clarinet ; Bridget Douglas, flute ; Riki Gooch, percussion, electronics. Contents Underground — Ash and bone — I follow it — You want to fight everything — The long long walk — A second glance — Wash your mouth out — Water the earth.” ( Adapted from Catalogue.) 

Utterance / Long, David
“Musicians …David Long, banjo, theremin, bowed guitar ; Richard Nunns, taonga pūoro ; Natalia Mann, harp, prepared harp, zither, gongs, voice. Tracks Perilous knowledge — Old shadows — Spider shell — Upper circle, lower case — Celestial dog — Mercury — The nearest clear liquid — We died once — City of green — Hidden cameras — Begin again.” ( Adapted from Catalogue) 

Flock : the best of The Mutton Birds / Mutton Birds

” Other Title Best of The Mutton Birds. Contents …Dominion Road — Nature — The heater — A thing well made — White Valiant — In my room — Anchor me — Wellington — Queen’s English — Don’t fear the reaper — While you sleep — She’s been talking — Come around — Envy of angels — As close as this — Last year’s shoes — Pulled along by love — Not to take sides.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

The Mutton Birds. / Mutton Birds
Dominion Road (3:55) — Your window (4:39) — A thing well made (4:39) — She’s like a city (3:56) — Before the breakthrough (4:52) — White Valiant (5:12) — Giant friend (3:15) — Big fish (4:33) — No plans for later (2:31) — Nature (3:39).” ( Adapted from Catalogue) 

 

Salty / Mutton Birds
The heater — Ngaire — You will return — Wellington — In my room — When the wind comes round — Queen’s English — Salty my dear — There’s a limit — Esther — No telling when — Anchor me — Too close to the sun — Don’t fight it, Marsha, it’s bigger than both of us. ” ( Adapted from Catalogue) 

 

 

International Women’s Day: Tuesday 8 March

We’re celebrating International Women’s Day with these epic books from our collection, featuring stories of courageous, creative, bold, brave, smart, successful, athletic and generally awesome women from Aotearoa and around the world.

Kia pai tāu pānui! Happy reading!

Nuku : stories of 100 indigenous women / Matata-Sipu, Qiane
“The power of storytelling is evident in our earliest pūrākau. Stories can change the world. It is how our tūpuna passed on their knowledge, the blueprint for living well, for generations. Through telling their stories, the women in this book seek to influence the world around them. The youngest is 14 and the eldest is in her mid-70s. They are wāhine Māori, Moriori, Pasifika, Melanesian, Wijadjuri, Himalayan and Mexican”–Back cover.” (Catalogue)

 

Bookish broads : women who wrote themselves into history / Marino, Lauren
“Women have written some of our most extraordinary literary works while living in societies and cultures that tried to silence them. These women dared to put pen to paper to express the multifaceted female experience. In Bookish Broads, Lauren Marino celebrates fierce, trailblazing female writers, reworking the literary canon that has long failed to recognize the immense contributions of women. Featuring more than 50 brilliant bookish broads, Marino cleverly illuminates the lives of the greats as well as the literary talents history has wrongfully overlooked.” (adapted from catalogue)

Ngā Mōrehu = The survivors : the life histories of eight Māori women
“In eight remarkable oral histories, NGA MOREHU brings alive the experience of Maori women from in the mid-twentieth century. The title, ‘the survivors’, refects the women’s connection with the visionary leader Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Turuki and his followers, who adopted the name ‘Nga Morehu’ during the wars of the 1860s. But these women are not only survivors: they are also the chosen ones, the leaders of their society. They speak here of richly diverse lives – of arranged marriages and whangai adoption traditions, of working in both Maori and Pakeha communities. They pay testimony to their strong sense of a shared identity created by religious and community teachings.” (adapted from catalogue)

Women in sports : 50 fearless athletes who played to win / Ignotofsky, Rachel
“Illustrated profiles of fifty pioneering female athletes, from the author of the New York Times bestseller Women in Science. A charmingly illustrated and inspiring book, Women in Sports highlights the achievements and stories of fifty notable women athletes. Covering more than forty sports, this fascinating collection also contains infographics about notable women’s teams throughout history, pay and media statistics for female athletes, and muscle anatomy. Women in Sports celebrates the success of the tough, bold, and fearless women who paved the way for the next generation of athletes” (adapted from catalogue)

But I changed all that : ‘first’ New Zealand women / Tolerton, Jane
“But I Changed All That is a collection of New Zealand women ‘firsts’, from Kate Sheppard in 1893 to Kristine Bartlett, Katie Milne and Jacinda Ardern in 2018. The 76-page book contains portraits of New Zealand women who broke new ground, with extended captions, including a quote from each subject.” (Catalogue)

 

Bad girls throughout history : 100 remarkable women who changed the world / Shen, Ann
“The 100 revolutionary women featured in this illustrated book were bad in the best sense of the word: they challenged the status quo and changed the rules for those who followed. From ancient times through present day, from pirates to artists, scientists to spies, these courageous women achieved unprecedented feats and left a permanent mark on human history.”–Back cover.” (Catalogue)

Pasifika women : our stories in New Zealand / Kailahi, Sandra
“Sandra Kailahi has interviewed 20 Pacific women that have worked tirelessly within the New Zealand community to better the lives of their peoples. Included are politicians, artists, writers, church representatives, sportswomen, community leaders and many more. The interviews cover early lives to the present, and showcase the strengths and depths of knowledge the women contribute to New Zealand society every day. Each biography is accompanied by Eimi Tamua’s beautifully shot portrait, as well as imagery from the contributors’ private collections of photographs.” (Catalogue)

Little leaders : bold women in black history / Harrison, Vashti
“Based on her popular Instagram posts, debut author/illustrator Vashti Harrison shares the stories of 40 bold African American women who shaped history.” (Catalogue)

 

 

Women artists A to Z / LaBarge, Melanie
“From household names like Frida Kahlo and Georgia O’Keeffe, to French-born Australian artist Mirka Mora, to underrepresented creators such as Jaune Quick-to-See Smith and Xenobia Bailey, this empowering alphabet picture book features a variety of genres – painting, drawing, sculpture, and more. Each lushly illustrated spread summarises the artist’s work in one word, such as ‘D is for Dots’ (Yayoi Kusama) and ‘N is for Nature’ (Maya Lin), and gives the essential information to know about the creator.” (adapted from catalogue)

We should all be feminists / Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi
“What does “feminism” mean today? That is the question at the heart of We Should All Be Feminists, a personal, eloquently-argued essay by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the award-winning author of ‘Americanah’ and ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’. With humour and levity, here Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century – one rooted in inclusion and awareness. She shines a light not only on blatant discrimination, but also the more insidious, institutional behaviours that marginalise women around the world, in order to help readers of all walks of life better understand the often masked realities of sexual politics.” (adapted from catalogue)

On this day she : putting women back into history, one day at a time / Bell, Jo
“An inspiring collection that shines a light on incredible women who were never given the acknowledgement they deserved. Here are the women whom time has forgotten; those who didn’t make it into the history books and those whom society failed to uphold as significant figures in their own right. Finally, we shall know their stories.” (Catalogue)

Women in science : 50 fearless pioneers who changed the world / Ignotofsky, Rachel
“The New York Times bestseller Women in Science highlights the contributions of fifty notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world.” (Catalogue)