I had a child with a major drug dealer


Robyn Windshuttle recalls her long affair with a man who was charming, charismatic ... and a major drug dealer.

Vintage reads: The Shipping News

Woman reading on the grass

Mark Caunter of Hamilton City Libraries finds a Pulitzer Prize winner from the early 1990s that's still a winner.

How to speak money

John Lanchester

For author John Lanchester, understanding the language of money was liberating.

Books about the surveillance state

George Orwell

So in the spirit of the election tomorrow, here are some insightful novels about surveillance.

Winemaker takes top NZ literary prize


The BNZ Literary Awards winners have been announced with a Hawke's Bay winemaker taking the top prize.

Journey to a Hanging would be a great novel

peter wells strap

REVIEW: The line between fact and fiction dissolves in Peter Wells' book Journey to a Hanging.

Mary O'Hagan's memoir of madness

Mary O'Hagan

REVIEW: A memoir of madness is deliberately upsetting and beautifully packaged.

Vintage reads: The Call of the Wild

Browsing books

Melissa Goode of Hamilton City Libraries heads to the Yukon in a classic tale.

Sports author turns to Kiwi crime fiction

Paul Thomas

New Zealand writer Paul Thomas tells of his jump from sport to crime books.

Auckland stories in line for prize

Auckland skyline

A new award is offering $12,000 for a "quality text work about living in Auckland".

Musings about the 2014 Booker shortlist


I really struggled with this year's Man Booker Prize shortlist. Both the authors whom I thought should have made it, didn't.

Man Booker Prize short-list announced

man booker prize

The Man Booker Prize short-list is out, but there is no chance of a Kiwi repeat.

Frankton: Tale of town that could be

	 Barry Lafferty

Barry Lafferty has a long family connection with Frankton and this Saturday will launch the first modern history of the suburb.

Burns Fellow 'honoured'

Louise Wallace

2015 University of Otago Burns Fellow Louise Wallace "honoured and humbled" by appointment.

This book may change your life

Reading by the fire

Written by a philosophy professor, this knockout of a novel is about what makes life worth living.

Wuthering Heights keeps me wanting more

Wuthering Heights book cover

I fell in love with Wuthering Heights and keep returning to have my heart broken with Heathcliff's again and again.

Johnny Depp led to the 'real' Jack the Ripper

A new book claims to have unmasked Jack the Ripper - using the only forensic evidence in the case.

Quigley's stories a moveable feast

Sarah Quigley

Sarah Quigley plays with both style and form in her new collection of short stories.

Vintage reads: 84 Charing Cross Road


Browsers Bookshop owner Rachel Pope has a customer forcefully suggest a book to review.

Sherlock Holmes' Kiwi connection

William Honeyman

William Honeyman used logical processes of detective work in his fiction and it fascinated Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Eleanor Catton up for Dylan Thomas Prize

Eleanor Catton getting her investiture

Kiwi author Eleanor Catton is short-listed for the world's biggest literary prize for young writers.

Minecraft now publishing sensation


A series of illustrated books has made Minecraft one of publishing's most successful franchises.

The book that started a love affair

Woman reading on the grass

There's one thing that has always been by my side, my companion, my solace and ever reliable...

Young author never lived to see book's success


The Book of Hat by 20 year-old Harriet "Hat" Rowland topped charts, but not before she died of cancer.

Share your love affair with books


What's that one dog-eared, well-loved book that you always return to when you need a good read?

Out of this world success from Outlander

Diana Gabaldon

Diana Gabaldon wrote the first Outlander novel "for practice".

Soundtrack of my life: Tracy Farr

Tracy Farr

Wellington-based writer Tracy Farr loved records in the 70s but gave up writing songs for fiction.

Vintage reads: The Name of the Rose


Kylie Thomson of Hamilton City Libraries finds a great novel from not that long ago.

Finding a lost continent


New science shows New Zealand is part of a continent that's 94 per cent underwater.

Eleanor Catton sets up grant for budding writers

Eleanor Catton

Eleanor Catton is using the money she won at the Book Awards to give writers more time to read.

Trafficking teeth and other cool things


One of the best parts of writing this blog is the opportunity to meet and "interview" some of my favourite authors

Architect first up for festival

Shigeru Ban

Within the cardboard structure of the cathedral he designed, architect Shigeru Ban opened Chch biennial writer's festival.

Luminaries not picked as best book in NZ

Jill Trevelyan

The Luminaries is good enough to win Man Booker Prize, but it's not the best book here.

Brain and brawn: How To Think About Exercise

Brad Pitt, Chad, Burn After Reading

Author Damon Young discusses why philosophy and fitness are a natural fit.

Harry Potter helped shape the political culture of a generation

Harry Potter

How has the boy-who-lived influenced political values and perspective of a generation?

The Chocolate Factory controversy revisited

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

What the new Chocolate Factory cover controversy says a lot about book industry and readers.

Pride among Vietnam veterans

Willie Walker is matter-of-fact when he talks about the battle of Long Tan, fought 48 years ago.

Characters become 'part of your family'


Amber Field loves Outlander so much she wore her first copy out. Here's what makes the book so great.

Demand for Dirty Politics stays strong

Hager strap

Four days and 10,000 copies later, and you'd still be lucky to get your hands on Dirty Politics.

Slater pushes back against Hager

cameron slater

Blogger Cameron Slater rips into Nicky Hager's book targeting him and the National Party.

Vintage reads: The Endless Steppe

Browsing books

Browsers bookshop owner Rachel Pope rediscovers a moving children’s book.

Hager book selling 'like wildfire'

Nick Fowler

The Nelson publisher of Nicky Hager's latest book Dirty Politics says he stands by Hager and published the book because it was of public interest.

Author offers student light reading relief

James Patterson


James Patterson's adventure book series offers an English undergrad light reading relief.

Kristin Hersh: Fluent in the language of music

Kristin Hersh

The woman whose music influenced Nirvana and the Pixies is coming to talk.

Vape, adorbs added to Oxford Dictionaries

Britain's Oxford University Pres

Don't know what "vaping" is? How about "listicle"?

LiLo: My book will be like Harry Potter


Lindsay Lohan says her upcoming memoires will be just like "Harry Potter".

Sci-fi books prove power of humanity


David Murray wasn't interested in books, until science fiction opened his mind to a world of possibilities.

Dirty Politics: Industry overwhelmed by demand

Nicky Hager Sold OUt

With 4000 copies sold by lunchtime, Nicky Hager's bombshell has "overwhelmed" the book industry.

Hitchhikers' Guide: A modern-day bible

hitchhikers guide to the galaxy

Is Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy a farcical space opera or a bible for the modern world?

Book of Changes offers new view

Browsing books

A manual on life for many, the philosophy behind the Book of Changes is a winner for Daniel Talis.
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