Parker ponders a sequel

23:41, Nov 11 2012

A sequel to Bob Parker's tell-all book may be in the pipeline.

Parker's book, Ripped Apart: A City in Chaos, hit the shelves over the weekend to a mixed reaction.

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The Christchurch mayor was asked on Radio New Zealand today whether he thought it was too soon to be "spilling the beans" when the city's recovery was continuing.

"I don't think it's too soon," he said.

"Maybe it just means there's room for a part-two book as well."


Parker admitted he may be "settling some scores" with the book, which details his humiliation after he was publicly labelled a clown, his sense of betrayal when one of his councillors leaked private comments to the media and his frustration when "strangers from the Wellington bureaucracy" took control of his city after the earthquakes.

"Well, there might be a wee bit of that," he said.

"Put it this way, there have been some controversial moments and sometimes there isn't the space in the media for the full context to be placed around those issues.

"It's great to have the chance yourself to actually put some of that context, and often that helps people to understand an issue they thought would have been controversial actually makes a lot of sense."

Parker defended allegations he was "electioneering" with the book.

"I was approached by several different organisations to produce the book while the topic was still topical I suppose. I saw it as a good chance to raise some money for charity," he said.

"There's a lot more than just a bit of political tittle-tattle. There's a story of real people and real strife and great heroism and how we coped together in a historically difficult time in our city."

He said the book was "just his personal opinion".

"I say at the start it is a very personal view,'' he said. ''It's how I see things, and people should obviously take that into account when they read the book, and I'm sure they will."

Parker 'pretty nervous' about writing tell-all book

The decision to write the controversial book was not made lightly, Parker told The Press.

"I felt it was the right thing to do, but you are never completely sure. I was pretty nervous about doing all this really," he said.

"But I don't think I'll lose any friends that I haven't already lost."

Parker hoped the book would lift the weight of the problems that had been "hanging" over him.

"In a personal way it was kind of a good thing to do. I felt like I could pack it up to a degree and put it behind it. It frees me from all that stuff that had been bouncing around in my head," he said.

The book details how Parker had contemplated quitting when Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee publicly labelled him a clown.

"It's a pretty serious moment in your life when you think, ‘Oh God, is that what the minister really thinks of me?'," he said.

He sat down with Brownlee last week, told him what was going to be published in the book and gave him an advance copy out of "courtesy and respect".

Brownlee had no issues with it and Parker believed it would strengthen their relationship by "outing" the issue.

"Gerry and I have a good relationship. He's levelled the odd thing at me and I have occasionally bitten back and we both understand that's the world we are in right now. There are tensions and they are real."

Parker did not believe the book would cause tensions between him and councillors or between the council and Brownlee because "all of these things are already known".

"I wanted the record to reflect my personal view as well as the views of some of the critics in some cases. This is the record as I saw it and I do make it very clear that it is a personal view."

Parker had "no regrets" and said he had received a "warm response" since the book was released.

The Press