Reviews – takahē 81


Life & Customs by Bernadette Hall
reviewed by Sue Wootton

Kokako 19 edited by Patricia Prime and Margaret Beverland
reviewed by Jane Orchard

100 Tanka by 100 Poets of Australia and New Zealand edited by Amelia Feilden, Beverly George and Patricia Prime
reviewed by Jane Orchard

Christchurch Crimes and Scandals 1876-99 by Geoffrey W Rice
reviewed by James Watson

I’m working on a building by Pip Adams
reviewed by Jane Orchard

Wake by Elizabeth Knox
reviewed by Jane Orchard

Intercolonial by Stephen Oliver
reviewed by Patricia Prime

Close to the Bone by Charlotte Trevella
reviewed by Sue Wootton

enough by Louise Wallace
reviewed by Sue Wootton

Tea Water Tea by Saradha Koirala
reviewed by Patricia Prime

Dark Sparring by Selina Tusitala Marsh
reviewed by Patricia Prime

Max Gate by Damien Wilkins
reviewed by Patricia Prime

The Voyagers – Remarkable European Explorations of New Zealand by Paul Moon
reviewed by Bronwyn Jones

Making Our Place; Exploring Land Use Tensions in Aotearoa New Zealand edited by Jacinta Ruru, Janet Stephenson & Mick Abbott
reviewed by Olivia Macassey


Bronwen Jones is a full-time writer of fiction and non-fiction. She has a post-graduate Diploma in Journalism (Canterbury) and a Master of Creative Writing (Auckland). Her first novel (unpublished) longlisted in the UK-based Historical Novel Society’s 2012 manuscript awards.

Olivia Macassey‘s poetry has appeared in various publications including Poetry NZ, Landfall, and Brief. She also writes on cinema and history, and holds a PhD in Film, Television, and Media Studies from the University of Auckland.

Jane Orchard is a health and safety consultant who grows nuts north of Westport and does editing and writing work for a little variety.

Patricia Prime is co-editor of Kokako, reviews/interviews editor of Haibun Today, and writes reviews for several journals including takahē, Gusts and Atlas Poetica. She was one of the editors for the Take Five Tanka Anthologies 2008-2011. She writes haiku, tanka, haibun, tanka prose and renga and has published her poetry worldwide. Her poetry, interviews and reviews have been published in the World Poetry Almanac (Mongolia) from 2009-2012. Patricia is a member of GIEWEC (India) and is on the Advisory Board of the New Fiction Journal (India). Currently Patricia is one of the editors of the World Haiku Anthology,edited by Dr. Bruce Ross, to be published in 2013.

James Watson grew up in Christchurch and even after living away for a quarter of a century still continues to regard the city as home, albeit now a rather broken one. He gained some awareness of the popular history of Christchurch from his mother, who had also grown up there. He is Associate-Professor in History at Massey University, Te Kunenga ki Pūrehuroa, Palmerston North.

Sue Wootton is a poet and fiction writer whose work has been widely published and anthologised. She is the author of four poetry collections, a children’s book called Cloudcatcher, and a short story collection (The Happiest Music on Earth). Her screenplay Bleat was produced as a short film by Short Film Otago in 2014. She has won several awards for her writing and was the 2008 Robert Burns Fellow at the University of Otago. Sue holds a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from Massey University. Her website is