To celebrate the 21st anniversary of the fabulous Wellington Writers Walk, we’ve taken a closer look at just a few of the authors represented. In this blog we take a look at Alistair Te Ariki Campbell’s typographical sculpture, which features a quote taken from ‘Blue Rain’ in The Dark Lord of Savaiki: Collected Poems, Hazard Press, 2003.
Blue rain from a clear sky.
Our world a cube of sunlight –
but to the south
the violet admonition
In the video below, local authors and Wellington Writers Walk Committee members Philippa Werry and Maggie Rainey-Smith explore Alistair Te Ariki Campbell’s work – to be found by going down steps between the Circa Theatre and the harbour to a walkway over the water, or viewed from above. They provide a fascinating insight into Alistair Te Ariki Campbell’s work life and creative process, and also celebrate his achievements, body of work and connections to Wellington.
The collected poems of Alistair Te Ariki Campbell / Campbell, Alistair
“The definitive edition of one of the most important bodies of work in New Zealand poetry. Based on a spiral-bound manuscript entitled Complete Poems 1947-2007 found among Campbell’s papers after his death, this is his most substantial collection to date and the first to be published in hardback since 1981.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The dark lord of Savaiki : collected poems / Campbell, Alistair
“In The Dark Lord of Savaiki Alistair Te Ariki Campbell presents the best of his early and middle period poems, as well as his latest collections, Gallipoli and other Poems, Maori Battalion, acclaimed as a New Zealand epic poem, and an autobiographical poem in letters, Poets in Our Youth. Few New Zealand poets have treated the natural world with greater sensitivity, while his personal lyrics and love poems have a music and a depth of feeling that set them apart. Campbell is in the enviable position of being both a New Zealand and a Cook Islands poet, enabling him to draw on imagery, folklore, history, and mythology from both sources, with powerful effect. The publication of this book is a time for celebration, as a poet in his eightieth year publishes perhaps his best collection” (Adapted from Catalogue)
It’s love, isn’t it? : the love poems / Campbell, Alistair
“Poet Meg Campbell, not long before she died, expressed the wish to be published with her husband, Alistair Te Ariki Campbell, in a joint collection of their poems. Sadly, she died before this could be accomplished. Campbell has now carried out her wish with this striking and unusual collection of love poems mainly from the exacting early and middle years of their marriage. Tested by mental illness, infidelity, doubt, and independence, their love remained strong to the end. Campbell has matched the love poems, his and hers, which appear on facing pages throughout the book. The result is never less than cogent and illuminating. If you like poems that are frank, direct and passionate, this is the book for you.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Scribbling in the dark : Alistair Te Ariki Campbell / Wattie, Nelson
“From the early days of Mine Eyes Dazzle Campbell’s poetic voice has had a charismatic force which has won him an unusually broad range of admirers. Young readers continue to be drawn by his strength of personal feeling, his compelling eroticism and his vivid renderings of the New Zealand and South Pacific environment.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
To celebrate the 21st anniversary of the fabulous Wellington Writers Walk, we’ve taken a closer look at just a few of the authors represented. In this blog we take a look at Patricia Grace’s sculpture, which features a quote taken from Cousins, Penguin Books, 1992
I love this city, the hills, the harbour, the
wind that blasts through it. I love
the life and pulse and activity, and the
warm decrepitude … there’s always an edge
here that one must walk which is sharp
and precarious, requiring vigilance.
In the video below, local authors and Wellington Writers Walk Committee members Philippa Werry and Maggie Rainey-Smith explore Patricia Grace’s work – to be found between the bridge and the Kupe sculpture, next to The Boatshed and down the steps, or view it can be viewed from the top. They provide a fascinating insight into Patricia Grace’s work, life and creative process , and also celebrate her achievements, body of work and connections to Wellington.
From the centre : a writer’s life / Grace, Patricia
“With photographs and quotes from her many, hugely loved books, Patricia Grace begins with her grandparents and parents and takes us through her childhood, her education, marriage and up to the present day in this touching and self-deprecating story of her life, the life of a writer, of a Maori woman and of a teacher. It expresses the love for family and for ancestral land; shows the prejudices she had to face and that made her stronger; and tracks her career as a writer.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Cousins / Grace, Patricia
“Three cousins’ lives have followed very different paths, yet their struggles offer insightful glimpses into the lives of contemporary New Zealand women. The author records psychological, cultural and political circumstances that circumscribe their worlds.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Dogside story / Grace, Patricia
“Set in a rural Maori coastal community, the humour and aroha of the community are powerful life preserving factors. But there is conflict in the whanau. Te Rua is battling for custody of his daughter against his two aunts. But why are they disputing custody and what is really going on?” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Potiki / Grace, Patricia
“In New Zealand, white developers pressure a Maori family to let them build a tourist complex on the family’s land. The conflict is narrated by the woman of the house. Lots of native lore.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Baby no-eyes / Grace, Patricia
“Baby No-eyes is Te Paania’s first child, killed in a car crash before she even leaves the womb. Baby’s ghost returns to comfort Te Paania, and when Baby’s brother Tawera is born he takes her place in the world although she is always by his side.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The sky people / Grace, Patricia
“In this collection of stories, we meet the Sky People – those who are wounded in love or by circumstance and those who are unwanted or dispossessed; the challenge to human dignity and its redemption.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Chappy / Grace, Patricia
“Daniel is sent to New Zealand to sort himself out. He discovers the remarkable love story between his Maori grandmother and Japanese grandfather. Racial intolerance and cross-cultural conflicts are encountered in a story of enduring love.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Tu / Grace, Patricia
“Three brothers, a war and secrets. Te Hokowhitu-a-Tu — Tuboy, Tu Bear — is the family’s hope for the future. First chance he gets he becomes a soldier, and finds there’s no place he’d rather be than with his battalion. Some years later, a niece and nephew come looking for answers. It is time for revelations.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Recently at Karori Library, we had the rare opportunity to celebrate the 21st anniversary of the Wellington Writers Walk the iconic waterfront walk. This very special event featured two of New Zealand’s most celebrated authors, Elizabeth Knox and Dame Fiona Kidman, who were interviewed by author, broadcaster and Writers Walk committee member Tanya Ashcroft. During this wide-ranging conversation, Elizabeth Knox and Dame Fiona Kidman talked about the creation and future of this wonderful Wellington institution, as well as the part they’ve played in making the walk the much-loved success it is.
The event has now passed into history, but with the participants and Writer’s Walk committee permission we were able to film the proceedings and are now proud to present a video of the evening.
For anyone unfamiliar, this walk along Wellington’s beautiful waterfront pedestrian precinct is considered by many as “one of the world’s loveliest urban land-and-seascapes”. It consists of sculptural quotations situated in picturesque locations from the writings of a selection of iconic New Zealand authors – both past and contemporary. The walk celebrates and commemorates the place of Wellington in these writers’ lives, and their place in the life of Wellington.
Writers on the walk include: Katherine Mansfield, Robin Hyde, Pat Lawlor, Denis Glover, James K. Baxter, Bruce Mason, Lauris Edmond, Maurice Gee, Patricia Grace, Vincent O’Sullivan, Barbara Anderson, Alistair Te Ariki Campbell, Eileen Duggan, Bill Manhire and our very special guests Dame Fiona Kidman and Elizabeth Knox.
We wish to extend our most heartfelt thanks to Elizabeth Knox, Dame Fiona Kidman and Tanya Ashcroft. We’d also like to thank Karori Library and its staff and The Wellington Writers walk committee for making this very special event happen.
You can now view the video below or visit our You Tube channel.
The Wellington Writers Walk is a project of the Wellington Branch of the New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa (PEN NZ) Inc.
Below is a very small selection of Elizabeth Knox and Fiona Kidman titles available to borrow.
So far, for now : on journeys, widowhood and stories that are never over / Kidman, Fiona
“Evocative, wry and thought-provoking, this is a rewarding journey with one of our finest writers. It is a little over a decade since Fiona Kidman wrote her last volume of memoir. But her story did not end on its last page; instead her life since has been busier than ever, filled with significant changes, new writing and fascinating journeys. From being a grandmother to becoming a widow, from the suitcase-existence of book festivals to researching the lives and deaths of Jean Batten and Albert Black, she has found herself in new territory and viewed the familiar with fresh eyes. ” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.
The absolute book / Knox, Elizabeth
“Taryn Cornick believes that the past is behind her – her sister’s death by violence, and her own ill-conceived revenge. She has chosen to live a life more professional than personal. She has written a book about the things that threaten libraries – insects, damp, light, fire, carelessness and uncaring. The book is a success, but not all of the attention it brings her is good. There are questions about a fire in the library at Princes Gate, her grandparents’ house, and about an ancient scroll box known as the Firestarter. A policeman, Jacob Berger, has questions about a cold case. There are threatening phone calls. And a shadowy young man named Shift appears, bringing his shadows with him. Taryn, Jacob, Shift – three people are driven towards a reckoning felt in more than one world.” (Adapted from Catalogue) This mortal boy / Kidman, Fiona
“Albert Black, known as the ‘jukebox killer’, was only twenty when he was convicted of murdering another young man in a fight at a milk bar in Auckland on 26 July 1955. His crime fuelled growing moral panic about teenagers, and he was to hang less than five months later, the second-to-last person to be executed in New Zealand. But what really happened? Was this a love crime, was it a sign of juvenile delinquency? Or was this dark episode in our recent history more about our society’s reaction to outsiders.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook Dreamhunter / Knox, Elizabeth
“Fast-paced and dazzlingly imaginative, Dreamhunter will draw the reader into an extraordinary fictional world in which dreams are as vividly described as the cream cakes in the tea shop, the sand on the beach or teenage first love.Set in 1906, Dreamhunter describes a world very similar to ours, except for a special place, known simply as The Place, where only a select group of people can go. These people are called Dreamhunters and they harvest dreams which are then transmitted to the general public for the purposes of entertainment, therapy – or terror and political coercion.Fifteen-year-old cousins Laura Hame and Rose Tiebold both come from famous dreamhunting families, but only Laura proves to be blessed with the gift and once inside The Place she finds out what happened to her missing dreamhunter father and reveals how the government has used dreams to control an ever-growing population of convicts and political dissenters.” (Adapted from Catalogue) All the way to summer : stories of love and longing / Kidman, Fiona
“Fiona Kidman’s early stories about New Zealand women’s experiences scandalised readers with their vivid depictions of the heartbreaks and joys of desire, illicit liaisons and unconventional love. Her writing made her a feminist icon in the early 1980s, and she has since continued to tell the realities of women’s lives, her books resonating with many readers over the years and across the world. To mark her 80th birthday, this volume brings together a variety of her previously published stories as well as several that are new or previously uncollected; all moving, insightful and written with love. The final stories trace her own history of love, a memoir of significant people from childhood and beyond.” (Adapted from Catalogue) The angel’s cut / Knox, Elizabeth
” Boomtown Los Angeles, 1929: Into a world of movie lots and speakeasies comes Xas, stunt flier and wingless angel, still nursing his broken heart, and determined only to go on living in the air. But there are forces that will keep him on the ground. Forces like Conrad Cole, movie director and aircraft designer, a glory-seeking king of the grand splash who is also a man sinking into his own sovereign darkness. And Flora McLeod, film editor and maimed former actress, who sees something in Xas that no one has ever seen before, not even God, who made him, or Lucifer, the general he once followed – Lucifer, who has lost Xas once, but won’t let that be the end of it. ” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook. The infinite air / Kidman, Fiona
“Jean Batten became an international icon in the 1930s. A brave, beautiful woman, she made a number of heroic solo flights across the world. The newspapers couldn’t get enough of her; and yet she suddenly slipped out of view, disappearing to the Caribbean with her mother and dying in obscurity in Majorca, buried in a pauper’s grave.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.
The vintner’s luck / Knox, Elizabeth
“One summer night in 1808, Sobran Jodeau sets out to drown his love sorrows in his family’s vineyard when he stumbles on an angel. Once he gets over his shock, Sobran decides that Xas, the male angel, is his guardian sent to counsel him on everything from marriage to wine production. But Xas turns out to be a far more mysterious character. Compelling and erotic, The Vintner’s Luck explores a decidedly unorthodox love story as Sobran eventually comes to love and be loved by both Xas and the young Countess de Valday, his friend and employer at the neighboring chateau.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an Audiobook.
To celebrate the 21st anniversary of the fabulous Wellington Writers Walk, we’ve taken a closer look at just a few of the authors represented. In this blog we take a look at Bill Manhire’s typographical sculpture, which features a quote taken from ‘Milky Way Bar’ in Milky Way Bar, Victoria University Press, 1991
I live at the edge of the universe, like everybody else.
In the video below, local authors and Wellington Writers Walk Committee members Philippa Werry and Maggie Rainey-Smith explore Manhire’s work, to be found overlooking the water by the bridge, near the Hikitia floating crane. They provide a fascinating insight into Bill Manhire’s work life and creative process, and also celebrate his continuing achievements, body of work and connections to Wellington.
Milky Way bar / Manhire, Bill
“Collection of award winning Bill Manhire poetry first released in 1992. Which includes his Wellington Writers Walk poem ” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Selected poems / Manhire, Bill
“This generous selection of Bill Manhire’s poems moves from playful early pieces like “On Originality” and “How to Take off Your Clothes at the Picnic” to major works of recent years such as “Hotel Emergencies”–a powerful response to contemporary atrocities–and “Erebus Voices”–written to be read by Sir Edmund Hillary at the 25th anniversary of the Mt. Erebus tragedy. The poems featured in this definitive collection of New Zealand’s most important poet are deceptively simple, often funny, and always revelatory of his own and his country’s history.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
South Pacific / Manhire, Bill
“”In this lively, humorous and original book, the romance of the Pacific confronts the truth about that paradise. The stories include a do-it-yourself murder mystery an assassination attempt on the Queen, the hilarious account of a Writers’ Congress in Kuala Lumpur, and an unsettling, futuristic tale from 1999.” “Set in New Zealand and its environs, several of the pieces were first collected in The New Land, which won the 1990 Buckland Award for the best work of literature published in New Zealand. In South Pacific Bill Manhire has added view tales and other work. A vein of satire runs through his stories. Yet rooted as many of them are in a particular place and time, the laughter they generate is anything but local.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The victims of lightning / Manhire, Bill
“Building on previous themes and introducing some new techniques, this collection reveals a respected poet at the height of his powers. Here are finely crafted lyrics, found poems, a bracket of songs, and complex emotions–all tempered by the use of humor.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Wow / Manhire, Bill
“Excuse me if I laugh. The roads are dark and large books block our path. The air we breathe is made of evening air. The world is longer than the road that brings us here. Bill Manhire’s new book begins with the song of an extinct bird, the huia, and journeys on into troubling futures. These poems reach for the possibilities of lyric, even as their worlds are being threatened in a range of agitating ways. In the title poem we hear a baby say Wow to life and to the astonishing prospect of language; but almost immediately we hear the world reply: Also. Along the way there are several desperate jokes. ” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The stories of Bill Manhire / Manhire, Bill
“Collects the stories from The New Land : A Picture Book (1990) and the stories added to South Pacific (1994) and Songs of My Life (1996). In addition there are previously uncollected and unpublished stories, the choose-your-own-adventure novella The Brain of Katherine Mansfield (1988), and the memoir Under the Influence (2003).” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Lifted / Manhire, Bill
“An award-winning collection exploring the plight of the secular spirit in the face of mortality and human violence, this work demonstrates a poet writing at the height of his powers.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Some things to place in a coffin / Manhire, Bill
“Bill Manhire’s first new collection of poems for seven years takes its title from his elegy for his close friend the painter Ralph Hotere, who died in 2013. At its heart is the sequence ‘Known Unto God’, commissioned by the BBC for the centenary of the Battle of the Somme in 2016. These are poems of memory and mortality, which are also full of jokes and good tunes.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
To celebrate the 21st anniversary of the fabulous Wellington Writers Walk, we’ve taken a closer look at just a few of the authors represented. In this blog we take a look at Iris Guiver Wilkinson’s, aka Robin Hyde’s, typographical sculpture, which features a quote taken from ‘Words’ in Young Knowledge: The Poems of Robin Hyde, ed. Michele Leggott, Auckland University Press, 2003
Yet I think, having used my words as the kings used gold,
Ere we came by the rustling jest of the paper kings,
I who am overbold will be steadily bold,
In the counted tale of things.
In the video below, local authors and Wellington Writers Walk Committee members Philippa Werry and Maggie Rainey-Smith explain Hyde’s work, to be found on a shaded bench overlooking the bay at the back of Te Papa Tongarewa / Museum of New Zealand. They provide a fascinating insight into Robin Hyde’s short, complex and eventful life, and also celebrate her astounding body of work and connections to Wellington.
Young knowledge : the poems of Robin Hyde / Hyde, Robin
“Familiar to many for her fiction and her life story, after publication of “The Book of Iris”, “The Book of Nadath” and the reissue of “The Godwits Fly” in recent years, prolific writer Robin Hyde’s first and best love was actually her poetry. “Young Knowledge: the Poems of Robin Hyde” presents for the very first time a substantial collection of Hyde’s powems, set as a choronological record.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The book of Iris : a life of Robin Hyde / Challis, D. A.
“It is a gripping and profoundly moving story about a “short, tumultuous, incredibly productive, sad and doomed life. It suggests comparison with both Mansfield and Frame . . .”. A dramatic and densely packed story, including appalling accounts of hidden pregnancies, life as a solo mother, drug dependency, intimate acquaintance with sexism and poverty, mental breakdown, and an extraordinary trip in China during the Sino-Japanese war.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The godwits fly / Hyde, Robin
“”By the time Robin Hyde wrote The Godwits Fly she was an experienced and prolific poet, journalist and novelist with an emerging international reputation. She could write with precision and edge. She was alert to different ways of seeing and voicing experience, intense and independent-minded. She stood for the underdog and for the cause of humanity. Her own brief life – thirty-three years, 1906-39 – was a roller-coaster of successes and deep despair. But she held her own line passionately against all odds, and she took the consequences of living hard – recklessly at times – with bravery and spirit.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.
Nor the years condemn / Hyde, Robin
“‘They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old; Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.'” “The line from the Anzac verse provides the title for this novel, in which Robin Hyde shows the predicament of returned servicemen and women after the First World War. Through the story of Douglas Stark, we see the many ways in which New Zealand was failing their expectations. It was not the ‘land fit for heroes’ they had fought for, but a changing society moving through the tough times of the twenties and thirties.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The book of Nadath / Hyde, Robin
“The Book of Nadath is a long prose poem by well-known poet and novelist Robin Hyde which has remained unpublished for 60 years. Written in 1937, Hyde’s last year in New Zealand, it is a sounding device for all the concerns which mark The Godwits Fly, A Home in this World and Nor the Years Condemn. It is arguably the crowning achievement of her poetry. It expresses dilemmas of identity, race and gender still current at the end of the century; but the moment of 1937 is its primary focus, the problem of how to articulate crisis – which writing voice best serves political and spiritual truth – is its enduring fascination.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
Iris and Me / Werry, Philippa
“Philippa Werry’s latest novel Iris and Me looks at Robin Hyde’s entire life touching on her both her childhood and final days , but the book is primarily focussed on her time in China and her journey there. Including her time as a War correspondent during the Sino-Japanese War.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
The uppish hen & other poems / Hyde, Robin
“A previously unpublished collection by Robin Hyde, one of NZ’s finest authors/ journalists, written for her son, Derek Challis. Richly illustrated by Glenorchy artist Dïne.” (Adapted from Catalogue)
This town of ours kind of flattened
across the creases
of an imaginary map
a touch of parchment surrealism here
no wonder the lights
all over the place
not a straight town at all.
In the video below, local authors and Wellington Writers Walk Committee members Philippa Werry and Maggie Rainey-Smith explain Kidman’s work, embedded in the sand at Freyberg Beach. They provide a fascinating insight into the pride Kidman feels about her sculpture, which celebrates her ancestry and deep connection to Wellington.
Join us at Karori Library on Saturday 13th May, 11am for a special event celebrating the 21st anniversary of the Wellington Writers Walk, featuring renowned authors Elizabeth Knox and Dame Fiona Kidman in discussion with fellow author and Writers Walk committee member Tanya Ashcroft. Together they will talk about the creation, history and future of this wonderful Wellington institution, and the part they’ve played in making the walk the much-loved success it is.
Please note we expect this event to be very popular and seating will be on a first come first served basis. A New Zealand Sign Language Interpreter will be present at this event.
Explore some of Dame Fiona Kidman’s books in our collection:
So far, for now : on journeys, widowhood and stories that are never over / Kidman, Fiona
“Evocative, wry and thought-provoking, this is a rewarding journey with one of our finest writers. It is a little over a decade since Fiona Kidman wrote her last volume of memoir. But her story did not end on its last page; instead her life since has been busier than ever, filled with significant changes, new writing and fascinating journeys. From being a grandmother to becoming a widow, from the suitcase-existence of book festivals to researching the lives and deaths of Jean Batten and Albert Black, she has found herself in new territory and viewed the familiar with fresh eyes. She takes us with her to Paris and Pike River, to Banff, Belfast and Bangkok, searching for houses in Hanoi and Hawera, reliving her past in Waipu and experiencing a stint in Otago. These locations and experiences – among others – have shaped Fiona’s recent years, and in this lively book she shares the insights she has picked up along the way.” (Catalogue)
All the way to summer : stories of love and longing / Kidman, Fiona
“Fiona Kidman’s early stories about New Zealand women’s experiences scandalised readers with their vivid depictions of the heartbreaks and joys of desire, illicit liaisons and unconventional love. Her writing made her a feminist icon in the early 1980s, and she has since continued to tell the realities of women’s lives, her books resonating with many readers over the years and across the world. To mark her 80th birthday, this volume brings together a variety of her previously published stories as well as several that are new or previously uncollected; all moving, insightful and written with love. The final stories trace her own history of love, a memoir of significant people from childhood and beyond.” (Catalogue)
True stars / Kidman, Fiona
“Who is trying to scare Rose? This gripping novel is a vivid portrayal of New Zealand in the 1980s.Rose Kendall is alone. She is isolated from her children, her friends, and her political ideals, and there is someone trying to scare her – she doesn’t know why and she doesn’t know who.True Stars shows the tensions and divisions in 1980s New Zealand, which were echoed both on a national level and in family relationships, which were crystallised by the 1981 Springbok Tour, and which gnaw at differences in race, gender, class – and politics. It is a savage and often humorous novel set during the last months of the Lange Government. ‘With True Stars, Fiona Kidman has become the foremost chronicler of our times.’ – Roger Hall, The Dominion” (Catalogue)
Beside the dark pool / Kidman, Fiona
“In this sequel to At the End of Darwin Road, Fiona Kidman takes us through the writing of over twenty more books, of her involvement in New Zealand’s literary circles, her championing of writing and writers and the significant people she has met along the way.” (Catalogue)
Ricochet baby / Kidman, Fiona
“A moving novel, with intelligent and compassionate insight into post-natal depression and the complexities of relationships. ‘When Roberta falls pregnant her whole family is filled with joy.’ Fallen is not exactly how Roberta would describe it, for she and Paul have planned the baby and it has been conceived at exactly the time that they chose. But the birth itself is not as anyone chooses and the circles that radiate from this crisis affect everyone involved and change Roberta’s life, in particular, for ever. Moving and perceptive, full of intelligence and compassionate insights into the complexities of human relationships, this is a fine novel from one of New Zealand’s best writers. ‘In her craft of her storytelling and in her compassionate gutsy tough expression of female experience, she is the best we have.’ – NZ Listener” (Catalogue)
The book of secrets / Kidman, Fiona
“The true story of three women who lived in a community under the harsh leadership of Norman McLeod. The community had followed him from Scotland in 1817 to found a settlement in Nova Scotia and then moved on to New Zealand. Anyone who ran counter to McLeod was forced to live a life of secrets.” (Catalogue)
Where your left hand rests : a collection of poems / Kidman, Fiona
“‘This book is a treasure, in all senses of the word.’ – Nelson Mail An outstanding poetry collection by one of New Zealand’s leading writers. This collection of poems from Fiona Kidman bear all the hallmarks of her writing- acute observation, a telling eye for detail, a wry humour and great empathy. By turns tender, passionate, elegiac and amusing, the poems range over wide territory, from imagining her Scottish grandmother’s arrival in New Zealand, to wearing Katherine Mansfield’s shawl, to time spent in Greece and in her garden. “Superb poetry. A truly lovely little book.” – Metro” (Catalogue)
The infinite air / Kidman, Fiona
“Jean Batten became an international icon in the 1930s. A brave, beautiful woman, she made a number of heroic solo flights across the world. The newspapers couldn’t get enough of her; and yet she suddenly slipped out of view, disappearing to the Caribbean with her mother and dying in obscurity in Majorca, buried in a pauper’s grave.” (Catalogue)
The captive wife / Kidman, Fiona
“A prize-winning historical novel that has become a New Zealand classic. Based on real events, this prize-winning novel is the compelling story of a marriage, of love and duty, and the quest for freedom in a pioneering age. When Betty Guard steps ashore in Sydney, in 1834, she meets with a heroine’s welcome. Her survival during a four-month kidnapping ordeal amongst Taranaki Maori is hailed as nothing short of a miracle. But questions about what really happened slowly surface within the elite governing circles of the raw new town of Sydney. Jacky Guard, ex-convict turned whaler, had taken Betty as his wife to his New Zealand whaling station when she was fourteen. After several years and two children, the family is returning from a visit to Sydney when their barque is wrecked near Mount Taranaki. A battle with local Maori follows, and Betty and her children are captured. Her husband goes to seek a ransom, but instead England engages in its first armed conflict with New Zealand Maori when he is persuaded to return with two naval ships. After her violent rescue, Betty’s life amongst the tribe comes under intense scrutiny.” (Catalogue)