BOOK REVIEW: Rod Laver: A Memoir
By Larry Writer with Rod Laver (Pan Macmillan Australia)
Who would dare question tennis icon Roger Federer's assessment of the greatest players of the sport in his time?
Federer's plumping for Laver as "the greatest champion our sport has known" will be widely accepted wherever the game is played.
Federer, after all, has been dubbed the greatest player and game's traditionalist of the modern era.
History will record that Laver was the first to complete the globally accepted Grand Slam of Australian, French, Wimbledon and US titles in the one year on two occasions (1962 and 1969).
New Zealand non-fiction books available now.
Wild South, Hunting and Fishing the Southern Hemisphere
By Peter Ryan (Bateman, RRP $40)
Reviewed by Naida Mulligan
Written from the heart, this beautifully produced book is a must-have for hunting enthusiasts, both practising and armchair.
He doesn't exactly detail how he's managed it, but Peter Ryan has done a fair amount of hunting and fly fishing in many parts of Africa and South America, as well as in Australia and New Zealand.
BOOK REVIEW: An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth
By Chris Hadfield (MacMillan, RRP $37)
Chris Hadfield is without doubt the world's most well- known astronaut since the hey-day of the Moon landings and Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
He is the dude who made us all smile last year with his music video of David Bowie's Space Oddity because, aside from anything else, he is probably one of few people in this world actually qualified to sing those lyrics.
This is Canadian Hadfield's take on life and a look at what he has achieved, which is quite a lot.
Most recently, he has served as the big cheese of the International Space Station, where he set records, oversaw an emergency spacewalk and entertained all of us earthbound beings with his photographs, videos about life in space and that now-famous Space Oddity cover (more than 10 million hits in the first three days it was online).
BOOK REVIEW: Kiss Me First
By Lottie Moggach (Macmillan, RRP $38)
The internet is an easy place to hide, to lie and to be completely absorbed by. It can be a place where you trust someone so completely that you can hand over your life to a complete stranger. Lottie Moggach tackles these disturbing realities in her unique and utterly compelling debut novel, Kiss Me First.
Leila leads a solitary life as an outcast to those around her and retreats to the internet where she can be herself.
When she discovers the website Red Pill, her life changes in ways she could never imagine, thanks to Red Pill creator, Adrian. Impressed by her online conversations in ethical discussions, Adrian asks Leila to be part of a project; to become Tess, a woman who wishes to take her own life without hurting her family and friends.
Lottie Moggach presents a thrilling story about stolen identity, depression, desperation and morality.
BOOK REVIEW: Reconstructing Faces: The Art and Wartime Surgery of Gillies, Pickerill, McIndoe and Mowlem
By Murray C Meikle (Otago University Press, RRP $60)
While the horrors of war are something we would all rather avoid, sometimes it is through those horrors that great things emerge.
During World War I, surgeons had a new challenge: That so many of the soldiers who survived being injured were left with devastating facial problems. They would survive to go home to their families but would be forced to carry the constant reminders of war on their faces.
Four New Zealand surgeons pioneered facial reconstruction surgery techniques during both World War I and II, helping to revolutionise the business of plastic surgery and facial trauma.
The methods they developed were ground-breaking in treating soldiers, pilots and civilians who had been disfigured by bombs, shrapnel and burns.
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