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NZCYA AWARDS SHORTLIST SHOWS STRENGTH OF NEW ZEALAND CHILDREN’S PUBLISHING

By Media Releases

New Zealand’s children’s publishing is in fine health. That’s the verdict of the judges for the 2019 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults after they faced the daunting challenge of whittling down a shortlist for this year’s awards.

“The quality of submissions was impressive this year,” says convenor of judges Crissi Blair. “We had serious problems selecting the finalists for each category and it was heartening to see a healthy number of submissions from mainstream, indie and self-publishers, all of which are represented in the shortlist.”

Blair also praises the depth of the subject matter amongst the finalist titles with a strong focus on books about our world and what’s happening to it. From climate change to representations of diversity, this year’s books take readers on journeys into the past, the present and the future, providing a new look at the familiar or an insightful sojourn into another time.

 

“The finalist books don’t underestimate what children are capable of understanding – both intellectually and emotionally,” she says.

A total of 164 entries were received for the awards this year, with 29 books making the shortlist.  The winners of each of the main six categories – Picture Book, Junior Fiction, Young Adult Fiction, Non-Fiction, Illustration and te reo Māori – take home $7,500 and are then in the running to be named the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year, with a further $7,500 prize money. In addition, the judges will award a Best First Book prize of $2,000 to a previously unpublished author or illustrator.

Building on work started last year, children were included in the judging process. Judges took a category of books into schools, where the criteria for identifying a good quality book were discussed, before students selected titles to read.

Students responded in a variety of ways including voting for their favourites (and least favourite!), writing brief reviews, allocating star ratings and discussing what they liked and disliked about the books. These results were then shared with the whole judging panel and considered when making finalist decisions.

“Including the young readers in the judging process had the dual benefit of informing the judges about children’s and teens’ opinions, but also developing the knowledge of the readers, rendering them more capable of interacting with their books in a meaningful way in the future,” says Blair, adding that the students were very honest in their appraisals.

 

A core aspect of the NZCYA Awards’ mission is to foster literacy and a love of reading amongst New Zealand’s children and teenagers. This is achieved through programmes like the HELL Reading Challenge, where kids receive  pizza rewards for reading, and the newly revamped Books Alive programme of events, which will see finalist authors and illustrators bring the magic of books to life at sessions for school children in Hamilton, Christchurch, Dunedin and Wellington.

 

Turning to those finalists, the judges were impressed with the way the entries for the Picture Book Award were simultaneously universal while being very reflective of a New Zealand childhood. The books deal with rainbows, birthdays, the comforts of home and themes of kindness, bravery and sharing.

Fun, magic, mystery and history were the order of the day in the Wright Family Foundation Esther Glen Junior Fiction category, with the rich abundance of stories submitted making for close calls when narrowing down to a final five.

 

Whether looking to the past, the present, or an imagined near future, each novel up for the Young Adult Fiction Award has superb writing, realistic interactions, insightful social commentary and satisfying dénouements in common.

There are no dull and dusty facts amongst the Elsie Locke Non-Fiction Award finalists. The judges found this category alive and kicking with books that connect youngsters with the richness of nature and the universality of the human spirit.

The Russell Clark Illustration Award finalists dazzle with their difference. From relaxed watercolours and quirky Kiwi settings to warm full-colour spreads, mixed-media mastery and emotive, pared-back graphics, the lack of homogeneity in this category proves just how diverse and creative our illustrators are.

 

The best storytellers know that words carve memories, and the titles nominated for the Wright Family Foundation Te Kura Pounamu Award for books written entirely in te reo Māori all have tales that engage and captivate audiences. The judges were particularly impressed with books that exemplified Mātauranga Māori in their view of the world, including retellings of traditional Māori stories.

 

Competition was fierce to make the shortlist for the Best First Book with the judges finding nothing amateur about these debuts, which they say are indistinguishable in quality from books by more experienced writers. All of the finalists for this award have used their writing to cut deep to the heart of what being a young person is all about.

 

The formidable task of narrowing the field to a list of finalists was met by this year’s experienced judging panel: Crissi Blair (convenor) a long-time promoter and champion of children’s books; Jane Arthur, an editor and poet who co-founded children’s book site The Sapling; Raymond Huber, a widely published children’s author and editor; Tania Roxborogh (Ngāti Porou and Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri), a veteran educator and an award-winning writer; and Simie Simpson (Te Ati Awa), a librarian in the Kaipara District north of Auckland.

They were joined by a panel appointed by Te Rōpū Whakahau to judge te reo Māori entries, which was led by Moana Munro (convenor), kaitiakipukapuka Māori for Hastings District Libraries, Anahera Morehu, who is part of the team which supports the Mātauranga Māori and Tukua workshops for those working in the information industry and is the incoming president-elect of LIANZA , and Jacqueline Joyce Snee, senior librarian Māori Research at Auckland Central Library.

 

The winners of the 2019 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults will be announced at a ceremony in the atmospheric Te Marae at Te Papa in Wellington on the evening of Wednesday 7 August.

 

The New Zealand Book Awards for Children & Young Adults are made possible through the generosity, commitment and vision of funders and sponsors: Creative New Zealand, HELL Pizza, the Wright Family Foundation, LIANZA, Wellington City Council, Nielsen Book and Te Papa. The Awards are administered by the New Zealand Book Awards Trust.

 

The finalists for the 2019 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults are:

Picture Book Award

Mini Whinny: Happy Birthday to Me, Stacy Gregg, illustrated by Ruth Paul (Scholastic NZ)

Puffin the Architect, Kimberly Andrews (Penguin Random House)

The Bomb, Sacha Cotter, illustrated by Josh Morgan (Huia Publishers)

Things in the Sea are Touching Me, Linda Jane Keegan, illustrated by Minky Stapleton (Scholastic NZ)

Who Stole the Rainbow? Vasanti Unka (Penguin Random House)

                                                                               

Wright Family Foundation Esther Glen Award for Junior Fiction

Search for a Kiwi Killer, Des Hunt (Tōrea Press)

The Dog Runner, Bren MacDibble (Allen & Unwin)

The Mapmakers’ Race, Eirlys Hunter, illustrated by Kirsten Slade (Gecko Press)

The Telegram, Philippa Werry (Pipi Press)

Whetū Toa and the Magician, Steph Matuku, illustrated by Katharine Hall (Huia Publishers)

                                                                               

Young Adult Fiction Award

Ash Arising, Mandy Hager (Penguin Random House)

Children of the Furnace, Brin Murray (The CopyPress)

Invisibly Breathing, Eileen Merriman (Penguin Random House)

Legacy, Whiti Hereaka  (Huia Publishers)

The Rift, Rachael Craw (Walker Books Australia)

                                                                               

Elsie Locke Award for Non-Fiction

Art-tastic, Sarah Pepperle (Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū)

Go Girl: A Storybook of Epic NZ Women, Barbara Else (Penguin Random House)

Ko Mauao te Maunga: Legend of Mauao, Debbie McCauley, illustrated by Debbie Tipuna and translated by Tamati Waaka (Mauao Publishing)

New Zealand’s Backyard Beasts, Ned Barraud (Potton & Burton)

Whose Home is This?, Gillian Candler, illustrated by Fraser Williamson (Potton & Burton)

 

Russell Clark Award for Illustration

Cook’s Cook: The Cook who Cooked for Captain Cook, written and illustrated by Gavin Bishop (Gecko Press)

Helen and the Go-Go Ninjas, illustrated by Ant Sang, written by Michael Bennett (Penguin Random House)

Oink, written and illustrated by David Elliot (Gecko Press)

Puffin the Architect, written and illustrated by Kimberly Andrews (Penguin Random House)

The Bomb, illustrated by Josh Morgan, written by Sacha Cotter (Huia Publishers)

                                                                               

Wright Family Foundation Te Kura Pounamu Award for books written completely in te reo Māori

Ngā Whetū Matariki i Whānakotia, Miriama Kamo, illustrated by Zak Waipara, translated by Ngaere Roberts (Scholastic NZ)

Te Haka a Tānerore, Reina Kahukiwa, illustrated by Robyn Kahukiwa, translated by Kiwa Hammond (Mauri Tū)

Te Hīnga Ake a Māui i Te Ika Whenua, written and illustrated by Donovan Bixley, translated by Darryn Joseph (cultural adviser) and Keri Opai (Upstart Press)
                                                                               

Best First Book Award

Art-tastic, Sarah Pepperle (Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū)

Bullseye Bella, James T Guthrie (Scholastic NZ)

Children of the Furnace, Brin Murray (The CopyPress)

Slice of Heaven, Des O’Leary (Mākaro Press)

The Stolen Stars of Matariki, Miriama Kamo, illustrated by Zak Waipara (Scholastic NZ)

 

ENDS

Ockham Book Awards logo

OCKHAM NEW ZEALAND BOOK AWARDS 2019 WINNERS’ ANNOUNCEMENT

By Media Releases

Ockham Book Awards logo 

‘Urgently Relevant’ Novel Wins Country’s Richest Literary Award

 Dame Fiona Kidman has won this year’s $53,000 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards for her novel, This Mortal Boy, a work described by the judges as ‘moving, memorable, authentic and urgently relevant to our times.’

The book published by Penguin Random House received the honour ahead of a strong line-up of finalists comprising Lloyd Jones (The Cage), Kate Duignan (The New Ships) and Vincent O’Sullivan (All This by Chance) at the Auckland Writers Festival marquee event held in the Aotea Centre this evening.

“In This Mortal Boy, Fiona Kidman has written an intensely human and empathetic story, recreating the events leading to the real life hanging of ’jukebox killer‘ Paddy Black at Mount Eden prison in 1955.

“With seeming effortlessness, she pulls the reader into mid-century New Zealand – the restlessness of a new urban youth culture, the moral panic that led to the Mazengarb report, the damning assumptions of the legal profession and the unchallenged omissions that eased the pathway to a young man’s death,” said this year’s fiction category judges.

New York Times best-selling author and academic Joanne Drayton won the Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction for Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love (Otago University Press).

The category judges said Hudson & Halls is not simply the story of celebrity chefs: “It is a generous, multi-layered, and touching account of companionship and enduring love.

“Set against the backdrop of the double act many of us will remember, Hudson & Halls reveals the humour and drama of this couple’s onscreen chemistry, and is a deeply moving and often surprising account of their private life. Set within the context of significant social and political moments over four decades and three countries, Joanne Drayton’s fresh approach to storytelling makes this a must-read.”

Helen Heath won the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry for her collection Are Friends Electric? (Victoria University Press).

“By turns thoughtful and moving, Are Friends Electric? asks how the material world might mediate—or replace—human relationships.

“Helen Heath’s collection impressed the judging panel with its broad thematic reach, its willingness to tackle complex issues, and its poetic risk-taking,” said the judges.

Senior curator Sean Mallon and French ethnologist Sébastien Galliot took the Illustrated Non-Fiction category for their work Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing (Te Papa Press).

The book which traces the art form from 3,000 years ago to the present day is described by judges as a visual feast.

“…quality design is met with innovative writing that both records and opens up new territory, creating a book that will expand and enrich the knowledge of readers throughout Aotearoa, the Moana Pacific and beyond. Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing celebrates the tactile pleasure of a book in the hand, and should be acknowledged as a milestone in contemporary publishing.”

Te Mūrau o te Tuhi, a discretionary Māori Language Award, was presented this year for the landmark work He Kupu Tuku Iho: Ko te Reo Māori te Tatau ki te Ao by pioneering language and tikanga academics Sir Tīmoti Kāretu and the late Dr Wharehuia Milroy published by Auckland University Press.

Te Reo Māori judge Dr Ruakere Hond acknowledged the very recent passing of Dr Milroy in announcing the award.

“He tai mutunga kore te ranga whai reo e āki kau ana ki te aroaro o te tokorua kātuarehe, ngā ruānuku o te reo o nehe, ki nāianei rangi.  He whāiti taua urunga, engari i konei ka wherawhera mai.  He maioha tēnei nā Tīmoti Kāretu rāua ko Te Wharehuia Milroy, kia hou mai te tāura ki waenga pū i ā rāua kōrerorero, he kōrero paki, he hokinga mahara o te ohinga, ā, pakeke noa.  He puanga rautangi ki te hauangi.  Kapohia e te tini.  He tatau e puare ana i tō rāua ao.

“Staunch advocates of our spoken reo have relentlessly sought to sit down with these two most influential exponents of reo Māori, from the past and for today.  Few have had the opportunity; this book now opens that door. Tīmoti Kāretu and the late Wharehuia Milroy invite the reader into their conversations, their yarns and musings from decades of cultural experience.  This book’s value is undeniable.  Its language, accessible.  This is a doorway to their world,” said Dr Hond.

The General Non-Fiction, Poetry, Illustrated Non-Fiction category and Māori Language Award winners each took home a $10,000 prize.

Four MitoQ Best First Book Awards were also presented at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.

The Hubert Church Prize for a best first book of Fiction went to Kirsten Warner for The Sound of Breaking Glass (Mākaro Press).

The E.H. McCormick Prize for a best first work of General Non-Fiction was presented to Chessie Henry for We Can Make a Life (Victoria University Press).

The Jessie Mackay Prize for a best first book of Poetry was awarded to Tayi Tibble for Poūkahangatus (Victoria University Press).

The Judith Binney Prize for a best first work of Illustrated Non-Fiction went to John Reid for Whatever It Takes: Pacific Films and John O’Shea 1948-2000 (Victoria University Press).

Each MitoQ Best First Book Award winner received $2500.

The 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards judges were:

Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize: journalist, reviewer and editor Sally Blundell; author and programme director of WORD Christchurch Rachael King; novelist, short story writer and lecturer James George (Ngāpuhi) and award-winning New York-based novelist Joseph O’Neill  who assisted the three New Zealand judges to select this year’s Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize winner.

Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction: science writer Rebecca Priestley, Associate Professor at Victoria University of Wellington; award-winning historian and University of Otago academic Angela Wanhalla and curator, educator and writer Karl Chitham (Ngāpuhi), new director of the Dowse Art Museum in Lower Hutt.

Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry: creative writing teacher Airini Beautrais; Massey University Professor Bryan Walpert and Pasifika poet Karlo Mila who runs an indigenous leadership programme.

Illustrated Non-Fiction category: Well-known writer, curator and commentator on all aspects of architecture, design and art Douglas Lloyd Jenkins; curator at Dunedin Public Art Gallery Lucy Hammonds and experienced bookseller Bruce Caddy.

Award-winning writer Paula Morris of the New Zealand Book Awards Trust, which governs the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, says in a highly competitive year of groundbreaking, compelling books, it is heartening to welcome two new sponsors.

“Peter and Mary Biggs, long-time arts supporters in New Zealand, are now sponsoring our poetry prize, and the innovators of MitoQ are backing our first book winners. Their commitment speaks to the vitality and mana of our writers, artists and publishers,” says Ms Morris.

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are supported by Ockham Residential, Creative New Zealand, the Acorn Foundation, the Royal Society Te Apārangi, Mary and Peter Biggs CNZM, MitoQ and the Auckland Writers Festival.

 

Lincoln Gould Retiring as Booksellers New Zealand CEO

By Media Releases

Lincoln Gould is retiring as CEO of Booksellers NZ at the end of October, after 10 years at the helm.

Announcing the retirement, Chair of Booksellers NZ, Juliet Blyth  says ’The Association has been immensely fortunate to have had Lincoln as our CEO these last 10 years.’

‘Lincoln has been a true champion for our members and for the wider book industry. Notably Lincoln was a key driver, in lobbying successive governments to implement the charging of GST on international online purchases, and this will be in place from October 1 this year.

‘Due to the strong relationships he forged with his international counterparts, particularly the American, Australian and British Booksellers Associations as a founding member of the English Language Booksellers Association, Lincoln has been extremely successful in bringing the world to NZ booksellers with many new initiatives.

‘These include  NZ Bookshop Day – celebrating independent booksellers and their communities, and the establishment of the highly coveted Winter Institute Scholarship, allowing kiwi booksellers to attend the ABA’s richly educational Winter Institute Conference, and gain work experience in American bookshops.

‘Lincoln’s achievements are many, and tough as it will be to see Lincoln go, with membership numbers on the rise and Booksellers NZ safely ensconced in their new premises across from Book House in Boulcott St, the Association is well positioned to engage in a new future. Lincoln came into Booksellers NZ from a background in change management and leaves with a demonstrable passion for the industry in the form of Messines Bookshop, his own bookshop in Featherston. Once again, the magic of bookselling does its thing’.

’Bookselling in New Zealand has seen great change in the past 10 years,’ says Lincoln, ‘and I have been fortunate to have been able to contribute to such an important  part of the cultural fabric of the country.

‘The financial crisis of 2009, the year I started, also saw the beginning of the e-book phenomena, which some predicted would be the end of printed books.  It was also the time when Amazon was attacking bricks and mortar bookshops around the world with cut priced on-line selling.  However, New Zealand booksellers rose to the challenge, with our agreement with Kobo offering the opportunity for member bookshops to sell e-readers and also consolidating their positions as important social and cultural hubs within their communities. Booksellers NZ and our members also quickly utilised the new tools of social media to promote and sell books online. The e-market has now plateaued, new bookshops are opening in communities across the country and real-book sales are increasing.’

Lincoln will see through the major projects for the year and the October date for retirement will coincide with the introduction of the requirement for offshore online retailer to collect GST on sales into New Zealand. The Booksellers NZ Board has done some preliminary work on a replacement role and will shortly engage the services of a recruitment specialist. The role will also be also advertised through The Read in the coming weeks. The Board aims to select a new head for the Association by the end of August.

 

ENDS

For further comment, please contact Juliet Blyth, Chair Booksellers NZ on 027 444 6062

PANZ-background-red

Unleashing the unifying power of poetry in New Zealand communities

By Media Releases

On Friday 23 August 2019, Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day will once again give New Zealanders the opportunity to come together and unleash the power of poetry in their own communities.

Last year, a massive 150 events took place nationwide – double that of four years ago – bringing together acclaimed poets, new voices, young writers and poetry enthusiasts. And now it’s back, for its twenty-first year!

Acclaimed poet and poetry champion Paula Green is a big fan of the day. ‘Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day is an inventive, invigorating, heart-warming showcase of the width and depth of our poetry communities,’ she says. ‘From beloved poetry elders to emerging poets, words open and spark in every nook and cranny, on airwaves, social media and street corners. This nationwide festival connects us through the power and joy of words.’

The feast of poetry around the country – from installations to open mike performances and competitions – includes appearances from Poet Laureates, spoken-word stars, and award-winning younger writers like Hera Lindsay Bird and Courtney Sina Meredith. Venues range from theatres, cafes, bars, libraries, schools, museums, marae, community centres and bookshops to pavements, parks and public transport.

The deadline for event organisers to register and apply for seed-funding is Wednesday 22 May 2019 at 5:00pm. Events can be registered online via this link: http://www.nzbookawards.nz/national-poetry-day/how-to-register-your-event/.

Held every year on the fourth Friday of August, National Poetry Day is a popular fixture on the nation’s cultural calendar. Phantom Billstickers have sponsored National Poetry Day for the past four years and support the celebrations with a nationwide poetry street poster campaign.

The Poetry winner at this year’s Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, announced on Tuesday 14 May 2019, will star in event(s) on Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day. The shortlisted writers for the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry are: Helen Heath (Wellington), Erik Kennedy (Christchurch), Therese Lloyd (Wellington) and Tayi Tibble (Wellington).

Find Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day on social: facebook.com/NZPoetryDay / twitter.com/NZPoetryDay / #NZPoetryDay.

ENDS

Notes to Editors

National Poetry Day has been running continuously since 1997 and since 2014, has been administered by the New Zealand Book Awards Trust. It has a mandate to celebrate discovery, diversity, community and pushing boundaries, and to ensure their longevity and credibility. The Trust also governs and manages the country’s two major literary awards – The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards and the New Zealand Book Awards for Children & Young Adults. New Zealand Book Awards Trust.

Phantom Billstickers is a street poster company which has consistently helped New Zealanders express themselves since 1982. Recognising and supporting home-grown talent has always sat comfortably alongside its commercial campaign work. Phantom actively promotes New Zealand music, art, poetry and culture around in public spaces here and overseas. Phantom Billstickers.

Paula Green is a popular poet, reviewer, literary awards judge and children’s writer. She has written numerous poetry collections and edited several anthologies. She has two popular poetry blogs, NZ Poetry Box for children and NZ Poetry Shelf for adults. Green has been a judge for the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, the Ockham Secondary School Poetry Competition and the inaugural Sarah Broom Poetry Prize in 2014. In 2017, she was awarded The Prime Minister’s Award for Poetry and admitted to The New Zealand Order of Merit for Services to Poetry.

NZ Booklovers Awards 2019 Winners Announced

By Media Releases

Fiona Kidman, Jo Seagar and Kimberly Andrews are winners in the inaugural NZ Booklovers Awards announced today.

‘These are books that all families in New Zealand will enjoy,’ says NZ Booklovers Director Karen McMillan. ‘Between the three winners, there is a novel that is an excellent piece of storytelling that takes the reader back in time to New Zealand in the 1950s, a lifestyle book that will be used repeatedly for family celebrations, and a children’s book that is likely to become a favourite and foster a love of reading.’

This Mortal Boy by Fiona wins the NZ Booklovers Award for Best Adult Fiction Book 2019.

The judges say, ‘This novel is a portrayal of a real event in New Zealand, one of the last times the death penalty was invoked. Set in the 1950s, the social climate of the time is beautifully portrayed – conservative, prejudiced against immigrants, and suffering from an upsurge in juvenile delinquency. It is very easy to engage with the characters, especially the central figure, Arthur Black. In 1950s Auckland Arthur’s unfortunate liaisons lead him to a situation which gets out of control. Is he a victim of prejudice and a miscarriage of justice? A well-crafted story that perfectly fits our brief of a book that celebrates the best in storytelling, a book we couldn’t put down.’

Better than a Bought One by Jo Seagar wins the NZ Booklovers Award for Best Lifestyle Book 2019.

The judges say, ‘Better than a Bought One is not a regular recipe book – it is a valuable addition to any Kiwi home! This is New Zealand’s beloved cook Jo Seagar’s best book yet. Sharing her love of entertaining, Jo inspires readers to celebrate life’s milestones at home. Her focus is on easy, economical ideas to mark everything from birthdays, backyard weddings, baby showers and other life celebrations to Matariki and a casual Kiwi Christmas. Jo deftly shows readers how to create special occasions with minimal effort and maximum impact. Jo’s trademark writing is accompanied by intoxicating photography that ensures readers will repeatedly refer to the book for memorable ideas. A highly pleasurable read that hits our criteria of a book that enriches people’s everyday lives.’

Puffin the Architect by Kimberly Andrews wins the NZ Booklovers Award for Best Children’s Book 2019.

The judges say, ‘As Puffin the Architect leads her difficult-to-please clients through her past designs – the homes she has planned for Platypus the Baker, Painter Goose and Pilot Moose, amongst others – they see and hear about her wonderful creations, but none are right for them. What is required is a cottage specifically designed for puffins, and “a home built by the sea” is underway. A detail with special appeal that comes at the end of the story is that the architect is their mum. Cleverly written in verse and with wonderfully detailed illustrations, this is a great read-aloud book and one that children will also enjoy reading alone for both the intricacies of the drawings and the ideas of planning a “custom-built” house. A picture book which can be read over many times and used as a creative discussion point for children’s own choices about house designs, Puffin the Architect has a richness, depth and complexity of concepts that will appeal to kids over a wide range of ages.’

Entries for the NZ Booklovers Awards 2020 are already open at www.nzbooklovers.co.nz/awards

‘We are passionate about supporting the many talented authors we have in New Zealand, so we are delighted to be offering the NZ Booklovers Awards for a second year,’ says Karen McMillan. ‘We welcome traditionally published authors and self-published authors to submit their books throughout the year. This year we were delighted to see a mix of well-known names and new talent and trust we will see a similar variety for the 2020 Awards.’

Judges
The Best Adult Fiction Book Award is judged by writer and literary editor Marcus Hobson, publishing professional Rachel White, and NZ Booklovers Director and author Karen McMillan.

The Best Lifestyle Book Award is judged by journalist and author Andrea Molloy, NZ Booklovers Director and author Karen McMillan, and publisher, home renovator and foodie Iain McKenzie.

The Best Children’s Book Award is judged by author and creative writing teacher Paddy Richardson, editor and writer Heidi North, and early childhood kaiako and journalist Rebekah Fraser.

About NZ Booklovers
NZ Booklovers is an online home for books and for those who enjoy reading them. It is a bookworms’ hub, dedicated to bringing New Zealanders everything they need to know about reading and the world of literature. Working alongside publishers, NZ Booklovers showcases both New Zealand and international titles. It provides a platform for sharing articles, author interviews, reviews, and book-related stories, as well as book news, competitions, and reading and writing advice.

Director Karen McMillan heads up a talented team of contributors and reviewers, fellow readers and writers who are passionate about books and who believe books inspire and enhance people’s lives. The NZ Booklovers Awards are the brainchild of Karen McMillan, with the aim of supporting the local publishing community and New Zealand authors.

The Prime Minister, Jeff Tweedy, Sir Antony Beevor among Stellar 2019 Auckland Writers Festival Line-up

By Media Releases

The 20th Auckland Writers Festival programme launches today, revealing a line-up of more than 200 events featuring over 230 globally acclaimed public intellectuals and much-loved literary stars offering conversation, laughter, ideas and inspiration for audiences of all ages from 13 to 19 May.

Appearing exclusively in New Zealand is memoirist and founding member and leader of American rock band Wilco, Jeff Tweedy. Joining him is acclaimed British historian Sir Antony Beevor; Canadian writer, visual artist and author of the iconic work, Generation XDouglas Coupland; memoirist and former Straitjacket Fits front man Shayne Carter; celebrated New Zealand novelists Tessa Duder, Lloyd Jones, Fiona Kidman, Witi Ihimaera, Albert Wendt and Vincent O’Sullivan; much-loved Irish writer John Boyne;  English writer, mathematician and concert pianist Eugenia Cheng; best-selling children’s writer Sally Gardner together with her erotic fiction adult nom de plume, Wray Delaney; one of our best known poets, novelists and critics C.K. Stead; 2018 British Women’s Prize-winning novelist Kamila Shamsie; 2018 American Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Andrew Sean Greer; globally best-selling author of The Book Thief and Bridge of Clay Markus Zusak; te reo Māori champions Scotty Morrison and Tīmoti Kāretu; Festival co-founder and award-winning writer Stephanie Johnson; current Katherine Mansfield Fellow Paula Morris; Kiwi trailblazers Marilyn Waring, Sir Kim Workman, Sandra Coney and Maris O’Rourke; one of Europe’s major literary voices, Germany’s Jenny Erpenbeck; South Africa’s Sisonke Msimang who was born in exile to freedom fighters; leading Asia journalist Richard McGregor; influential New Zealand artist Gretchen Albrecht; award-winning English hip-hop artist, writer, poet and founder of The Hip-hop Shakespeare Company Akala; Swedish authors of the Bill Gates championed book Factfulness Anna Rosling Rönnlund and Ola Rosling; one of the Pacific’s leading cultural custodians, former Samoan Prime Minister Tui Atua; multi-award winning Canadian novelist of Fugitive Pieces fame, Anne Michaels; and many more!

The Festival is internationally recognised now as one of the best literature celebrations in the world, with seven days of ideas, readings, debates, stand-up poetry, literary theatre, children’s writers and free public and family events. Festival attendance has grown exponentially, with audiences topping 75,000 last year.

Auckland Writers Festival director Anne O’Brien says it is enormously heartening to see so many people of all ages and with such varied interests, coming to the Festival each year.

“The Festival is part of the life-blood of New Zealand. It expands our world views, deepens our understanding on issues of the day, celebrates stories and writing, and offers a heady, seven-day, fun-times immersion.

“Where else can you hear a historian talk about sex work, a philosopher talk about what we can learn from octopuses, meet a freedom fighter and see performance poets all under one roof?

“If you haven’t been before, come and join the party, and if you’re a Festival regular, welcome back!”

Ms O’Brien says that the Festival is also proud to introduce its Māori name Waituhi o Tāmaki, with its many poetic resonances with water (wai, waiata meaning song-poem or reflecting water), writing (tuhi  – to write) and story-telling through other forms of writing such as kōwhaiwhai  and tā moko.

Te reo Māori scholar and author Hēmi Kelly (Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Tahu, Ngāti Whāoa), says its many references include “to the writing waters or artists or writers in this case whose stories are etched into this land like the flowing waters of a stream.”

The Prime Minister, Rt Hon. Jacinda Ardern appears in Stardust & Substance on Friday 17 May with Toby Manhire, discussing the remarkable weeks leading up to the 2017 New Zealand election and the impact of the result both domestically and around the world, as documented in the book of the same name.

English economist Kate Raworth joins us at the beginning of the week on Monday 13 May. Described by George Monbiot as the John Maynard Keynes of the 21st century, she contends that we need to reframe the economy by meeting the needs of all within the means of the planet. She discusses her book, Doughnut Economics, with Rod Oram.

The 51st Ockham New Zealand Book Awards will be held at the Aotea Centre on Tuesday 14 May. Come and see who will take home the big prizes at this premier event, with Stacey Morrison as MC.

With Jeff Tweedy and Shayne Carter on the bill, music was always going to be a key feature in this year’s Festival. There are more melodious events on offer, too. Journey through the four seasons in Man, Sitting in a Garden on Wednesday 15 May with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in collaboration with  writer Witi Ihimaera, composer Kenneth Young and internationally renowned New Zealand tenor Simon O’Neill. O’Neill also sings Schumann, Bach and Wagner, with English writer, mathematician and musician Eugenia Cheng on piano in The Sum of the Score on Friday 17 May. US Singer/songwriter Val Emmich has adapted the Tony Broadway Musical of the Year Dear Evan Hansen, into a novel. He’ll be on stage with Petra Bagust discussing the work, on Friday 17 May, with Auckland’s National Youth Theatre Company performing four hit songs from the show.  Join Whiti Hereaka, Kelly Joseph, Nic Low, Tina Makereti, Paula Morris, Regan Taylor and multi-instrumentalist Kingsley Melhuish on Thursday 16 May for an hour of mythic Māori magic in Pūrākau: Maori Myths Retold.

Friday night’s medley of madcap and mysterious writerly goings-on returns this year in dens and alleys of Central Auckland’s Lorne Street in the guise of Literally Lorne. There’ll be a specially commissioned short detective story from the Scotsman Liam McIlvanney to be read at the Central Library basement by ultraviolet torchlight; high-spirited writing exercises at the Academy Cinema; inspired writing at Gow Langsford art gallery; fun-and-games storytelling and typography at DesignWorks; short poems with sweet cookies from The Receptionist coffee kiosk—all presented by an array of the writing great and good. Look out for Festival favourites Michele A’Court, Emma Espiner, Kirsty Gunn, Karyn Hay, Dominic Hoey, Stephanie Johnson, Renee Liang, Lana Lopesi, Courtney Sina Meredith, Karlo Mila, Tze Ming Mok, Emma Neale, Victor Rodger, Carl Shuker, Damian Skinner, Ian Wedde, Ashleigh Young and others for the perfect Friday night indulgence, at entirely no charge. A full schedule and event descriptions will be posted on our website early April: www.writersfestival.co.nz/literally-lorne

They’re insidious, and according to The Human Rights Commission, they’re on the increase. David Chariandy (Canada), Jenny Erpenbeck (Germany), and Leonie Hayden and Victor Rodger (New Zealand) explore Every Day Acts of Racism in The University of Auckland Festival Forum on Wednesday 15 May, chaired by Carol Hirschfeld.

Always a sell-out, this year’s Festival Gala Night is True Stories Told Live: At the Crossroads on Thursday 16 May. Join us for a memorable evening with eight of this year’s best performers, each delivering a seven-minute true story with no props or scripts.  

Performance strands of the Festival include Wellington comedian Eamonn Marra, voted Best Newcomer at the New Zealand International Comedy Festival in 2014, presenting a 45-minute set exploring anxiety on Saturday 18 May. One of the UK’s most charismatic bards, Luke Wright presents an hour performing his best poems on Friday 17 May, in which he struggles with Brexit, doubt, duty and channels half-cut nights spent shouting impotently at the telly, namely at the BBC’s Question Time. Also on Friday, Poets Showcase: tend II here features six stellar poets challenging the performance concept of tenderness requires a giving away of oneself, MC’d by Grace Taylor.

 A three-time Festival sell-out for her extraordinary solo performances of Austen’s Women, Dalloway and Jane Eyre: An Autobiography, celebrated English actress Rebecca Vaughan returns as Virginia Woolf’s 1928 ageless, gender-fluid, immortal fictional poet Orlando, performing throughout the Festival period.

Head on down to the Town Hall on Sunday 19 May for the Festival’s absolutely FREE Family Day! A packed day of performances and presentations including story time with a HUGE 50th birthday edition of Margaret Mahy’s much loved classic The Lion in the Meadow, the live appearance of some of our native frogs and skinks with a reptile and amphibian expert, the Great Library Hunt, and fun upbeat sessions with writers, illustrators, singers, and presenters including Zara Clark, Malcolm Clarke, Joy H Davidson, Sally Gardner, Swapna Haddow, Heather Haylock, Bren MacDibble, Scotty and Stacey Morrison, Ruth Paul, Craig Phillips and Dylan van Winkel.

The event finale on Sunday afternoon is an hour with Honoured New Zealand Writer, Joy Cowley. One of New Zealand’s most loved and prodigious writers, Cowley has been crafting timeless work for more than 50 years. Best known for her books for the very young, she is also an accomplished author of adult novels, short story collections and a play. Join us in celebrating Cowley’s remarkable life and contribution to writing in this free session, in conversation with Carole Beu.

Ms O’Brien says it’s a privilege to present such diverse and talented writers from here and around the world.

“The last few years has seen unprecedented interest in the Festival from audiences who travel not only from all over Auckland, but from around the country and abroad to listen to globally lauded writers and ideas, men and women who deepen our thinking, make us laugh, move us and help us to make sense of this increasingly complicated world.

“We are now one of the largest and most respected literary festivals in the world and I encourage everyone to come along and engage with words and ideas offered in books, song, stand-up, performances, prose, in debates and conversations, from voices both familiar and new.”

The 2019 Auckland Writers Festival programme is launched at an invitation-only event at the Aotea Centre on the evening of Wednesday 13 March.

A preferential booking period for Festival Patrons and Friends follows, with public tickets on sale from 9.00am, Friday 15 March from www.ticketmaster.co.nz.

The Auckland Writers Festival warmly thanks Platinum Partner: Heartland Bank; Gold Partners: The University of Auckland, Freemasons Foundation, Ockham Residential and Creative New Zealand; Silver Partners: ATEED, Barfoot & Thompson, Craigs Investment Partners, Foundation North, Hobson Leavy Executive Search, Newstalk ZB, The New Zealand Herald, The University of Auckland Faculty of Medical & Health Sciences; Bronze Partners: Hachette, HarperCollins, Hawkins & Co, Heart of the City, NZ Community Trust, Penguin Random House, QMS, The Lion Foundation, Victoria University Press and Supporting Partners.

We are also enormously grateful to our Festival patrons for their enthusiasm and generosity.

Go to www.writersfestival.co.nz for more information on appearing writers and their events.

 

ENDS

 

KEY DATES AND HIGHLIGHTS

13-19 May           Full Festival Programme (Aotea Centre, Auckland Art Gallery, Heartland Festival Room in Aotea Square, MASU Restaurant)

 

13 May                 Doughnut Economics: Kate Raworth (Aotea Centre)

 

14 May                 Auckland Writers Festival Schools Programme (Aotea Centre)

Ockham New Zealand Book Awards (Aotea Centre)

 

15 May                 Auckland Writers Festival Schools Programme (Aotea Centre)

The University of Auckland Festival Forum (Aotea Centre)

                                Man, Sitting in a Garden with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra (Auckland Town Hall)

 

16 May                 Auckland Writers Festival Schools Programme (Aotea Centre)

Masu Lunch with Tony Tan                         

Festival Gala Night (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre)

History or Gossip? The University of Auckland Free Public Lecture: CK Stead (Heartland Room, Aotea Square)

 

17 May                 Stardust and Substance: Jacinda Ardern (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre)

Literally Lorne (Lorne St, Auckland central – various venues)

Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel, Val Emmich (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre)

Let’s Go: Jeff Tweedy: (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre)

 

18 May                 Sarah Broom Poetry Prize 2019 (Waitākere Room, Aotea Centre)

The Heart of War: Antony Beevor (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre)

 

19 May                 FREE Family Day Programme (Town Hall Concert Chamber & Balcony Bar)

Honoured New Zealand Writer event (ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre, free entry)

For international author photos:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4nkgheib5qtq9c0/AAB324ZuS70Mh5HR4zQs7OB-a?dl=0

For New Zealand author photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ym0bzhjawu8txg0/AAAL_MR7I1h7UM_-G83to_Bwa?dl=0

For digital Festival banners: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/wpcx073xo3nkhsg/AAAsnom_GH7lmiu48b1kcA6wa?dl=0

For further information, interview opportunities and for more images please contact: Penny Hartill, director, hPR, 09 445 7525, 021 721 424, www.hartillpr.co.nz

www.writersfestival.co.nz           www.facebook.com/akwrfest   @AklWritersFest

 

#awf19

 

 

Ockham Book Awards logo

2019 Ockham Finalists Explore the Truth and Issues of Our Times

By Media Releases

Ockham Book Awards logoFour of our best-known novelists – whose novels, appropriately for our times, explore what it means to tell the truth – are in the running for the country’s richest fiction writing prize with today’s Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalist announcement.

The Cage by Lloyd Jones, This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman, All This By Chance by Vincent O’Sullivan, and The New Ships by Kate Duignan are shortlisted for the $53,000 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize.

“They stood out for their ability to explore personal memory and collective mediation of the truth in new and provocative ways that have a lasting impact on the reader,” says the Fiction category convenor of judges Sally Blundell.

Award-winning New York-based novelist Joseph O’Neill will assist the three New Zealand judges to select this year’s Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize winner.

Today’s announcement includes two major new Awards’ sponsors. Mitochondrial science company MitoQ will sponsor the four Best First Book awards, and arts enthusiasts and philanthropists Mary and Peter Biggs will support the Poetry category.

MitoQ’s chief marketing officer John Marshall says that as one of New Zealand’s newest success stories, it is their pleasure to help emerging writers further enrich the country’s literature.

Peter Biggs says that with poetry undergoing a wonderful resurgence in our country over the last few years, it struck him as strange that the Award for Poetry was unsupported.

“We are thrilled to be involved and hope that the Award continues to recognise poetry’s – and the poet’s – vital role to, as Salman Rushdie says, shape the world and stop it from going to sleep.”

The finalists in the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry are Are Friends Electric? by Helen Heath; There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime by Erik Kennedy; The Facts by Therese Lloyd and Poūkahangatus by Tayi Tibble.

“The poetry collections on this year’s shortlist are marked by a striking diversity of approaches to the lyric poem, but all show an ambitious and engaging interest in experimenting with narrative, form, structure and voice without sacrificing emotional resonance,” says this year’s Poetry category convenor of judges Bryan Walpert.

 

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction finalists are New York Times best-selling author and academic Joanne Drayton for Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love; lauded and much-loved writer Maurice Gee for Memory Pieces; debut author Chessie Henry for We Can Make A Life, and renowned editor and writer Anna Rogers for With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War.

“We were excited by the fresh and diverse perspectives, new voices, and generous writing reflected in the shortlist, as well as by the appeal and attractiveness of the books themselves,” says General Non-Fiction category convenor of judges Angela Wanhalla.

In the Illustrated Non-Fiction category, the four finalists are: Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand’s Native Forests by conservationist and journalist Paul Bensemann; Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor edited by investigative artist and researcher Bronwyn Holloway-Smith; Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing by senior curator Sean Mallon with anthropologist Sébastien Galliot, and Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand by writer, publisher and environmentalist Geoff Norman.

Illustrated Non-Fiction category convenor Douglas Lloyd-Jenkins says the judges were thrilled with the quality and ambition of the short-listed books, all of which clearly stood out from the rest.

New Zealand Book Awards trustee Jenna Todd says the Ockham’s shortlist is clear evidence of the vitality of New Zealand literature.

“Not only does the shortlist feature some of our best known writers – those with long and illustrious careers – but it also includes newcomers writing out of deep passion and engagement. These 16 books deepen the public discourse on a range of issues and the particular genius of each of their writers lifts them to an emotional plane at which they reward and endure for their readers,” says Ms Todd.

The 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalists are:  

The Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize:

The New Ships by Kate Duignan (Victoria University Press)

The Cage by Lloyd Jones (Penguin Random House)

This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman (Penguin Random House)

All This by Chance by Vincent O’Sullivan (Victoria University Press)

The Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry:

Are Friends Electric? by Helen Heath (Victoria University Press)

There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime by Erik Kennedy (Victoria University Press)

The Facts by Therese Lloyd (Victoria University Press)

Poūkahangatus by Tayi Tibble (Victoria University Press)

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction:

Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love by Joanne Drayton (Otago University Press)

Memory Pieces by Maurice Gee (Victoria University Press)

We Can Make a Life by Chessie Henry (Victoria University Press)

With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War by Anna Rogers (Massey University Press)

Illustrated Non-Fiction Award:

Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand’s Native Forests by Paul Bensemann (Potton & Burton)

Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor edited by Bronwyn Holloway-Smith (Massey University Press)

Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing by Sean Mallon with Sébastien Galliot (Te Papa Press)

Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand by Geoff Norman (Potton & Burton)

The General Non-Fiction, Poetry and Illustrated Non-Fiction category winners will each receive a $10,000 prize.

The winners (including the four MitoQ Best First Book Awards and a Māori Language Award, presented at the judges’ discretion) will be announced at an awards ceremony on 14 May, at an event in the 2019 Auckland Writers Festival.

To find out more about the shortlisted titles go to http://www.nzbookawards.nz/new-zealand-book-awards/2019-awards/shortlist/ 

 

HarperCollins New Zealand’s new agency launch signifies a strong new focus for the future

By Media Releases

On April 1st five leading publishers will come together under one umbrella for sales, marketing and distribution in New Zealand.

Exisle Publishing, Hardie Grant, Simon & Schuster, Walker Books plus Gecko Press (who are represented by Walker) will be represented by HarperCollins New Zealand’s newly developed Arotahi Agency.

In te reo Māori Arotahi means to focus or concentrate and this is exactly the ambition the team at HarperCollins New Zealand brings to the formation of this new agency.

The team behind Arotahi Agency comprises some of the most experienced and passionate members of the New Zealand publishing trade:

Karen Ferns, Head of New Zealand sales for HarperCollins and Arotahi

Matthew Simpson, Key Accounts Manager, Arotahi

Sandra Noakes, Marketing and Communications for HarperCollins and Arotahi

Inna Carson, Sales and Marketing Co-ordinator for Arotahi

For our wonderful booksellers, there will be some changes of face in sales: Matthew Simpson will maintain key accounts and visit some independent booksellers throughout the top half of the North Island; Richard Matthews will cover both Arotahi and HarperCollins in selected regions; two-times book industry sales rep of the year award-winner Tammy Ruffell will represent Arotahi solely in the lower half of the North Island and in Nelson; and Peter Levy will be representing both Arotahi and HarperCollins lists in the rest of the South Island.

Karen Ferns said, ‘It is great to be underway and watch the experienced HarperCollins team quickly and effectively apply their skills to the new opportunities Arotahi offers for our customers.’

 

END

For further information, please contact:

Sandra Noakes, T. 0275767675 or E. Sandra.noakes@harpercollins.co.nz

 

NZ Booklovers Awards 2019 Shortlist Announced

By Media Releases

A mixture of well-known writers and new authors feature in the inaugural NZ Booklovers Awards shortlist announced today.
The latest works by Fiona Kidman, Nicky Pellegrino, Jo Seagar, Wendyl Nissen, David Hill and Fleur Beale are among the diverse range of books nominated for the NZ Booklovers Awards, along with exciting new authors.
Six books are shortlisted in each of the three award categories: adult fiction, lifestyle books and children’s books.
NZ Booklovers Director Karen McMillan says the inaugural awards received a large number of entries and the standard was extremely high.
‘The judges were excited to see the variety of books that our talented New Zealand authors have produced,’ she says. ‘Our fiction award celebrates the best in storytelling, a book that we couldn’t put down. Our lifestyle award celebrates the non-fiction books that have the ability to enrich our daily lives. For our children’s book award we were looking for picture or junior fiction books that help engage young readers and foster a love of books. It was a very challenging task to decide on the final six shortlisted books in each category, but we are thrilled with the quality of the books.’

The NZ Booklovers Awards 2019 shortlisted titles are:
NZ Booklovers Award for Best Adult Fiction Book 2019
A Change of Key by Adrienne Jansen (Escalator Press)
Crystal Reign by Kelly Lyndon (Remnant Press)
Fishing for Māui by Isa Pearl Ritchie (Te Rā Aroha Press)
Grandzilla by Lisa Williams (Crummer Road Press)
This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman (Penguin Random House)
A Year at Hotel Gondola by Nicky Pellegrino (Hachette)

NZ Booklovers Award for Best Lifestyle Book 2019
Better than a Bought One by Jo Seagar (Penguin Random House)
Eco Home by Melinda Williams (Penguin Random House)
Flourish by Juliet Nicholas and Barb Rogers (Penguin Random House)
The Natural Home by Wendyl Nissen (Allen & Unwin)
Ripe Recipes – A Third Helping by Angela Redfern and the Ripe Deli Team (Beatnik)
Wild Delicious by Amber Rose (Penguin Random House)

NZ Booklovers Award for Best Children’s Book 2019
Dear Donald Trump by Sophie Spiers, illustrated by Anne Villeneuve (Millwood Press)
Hero of the Sea by David Hill, illustrated by Phoebe Morris (Penguin Random House)
Kuwi’s Rowdy Crowd by Kat Merewether (Illustrated Publishing)
Lyla by Fleur Beale (Allen & Unwin)
Puffin the Architect by Kimberley Andrews (Penguin Random House)
Who Stole the Rainbow? by Vasanti Unka (Penguin Random House)

The winner in each category will be announced on 18 March 2019, and each winner receives $500 from NZ Booklovers.

The Best Adult Fiction Book Award is judged by writer and literary editor Marcus Hobson, publishing professional Rachel White, and NZ Booklovers Director and author Karen McMillan.

The Best Lifestyle Book Award is judged by journalist and author Andrea Molloy, NZ Booklovers Director and author Karen McMillan, and publisher, home renovator and foodie Iain McKenzie.

The Best Children’s Book Award is judged by author and creative writing teacher Paddy Richardson, editor and writer Heidi North, and early childhood kaiako and journalist Rebekah Fraser.

About NZ Booklovers
NZ Booklovers is an online home for books and for those who enjoy reading them. It is a bookworms’ hub, dedicated to bringing New Zealanders everything they need to know about reading and the world of literature. Working alongside publishers, NZ Booklovers showcases both New Zealand and international titles. It provides a platform for sharing articles, author interviews, reviews, and book-related stories, as well as book news, competitions, and reading and writing advice.

Director Karen McMillan heads up a talented team of contributors and reviewers, fellow readers and writers who are passionate about books and who believe books inspire and enhance people’s lives. The NZ Booklovers Awards are the brainchild of Karen McMillan, with the aim of supporting the local publishing community and New Zealand authors.

Judges’ comments:
ADULT FICTION
A Change of Key: ‘A wonderful collection of characters in this book set in a mostly migrant community. The residents are drawn together to support one another, and by weaving the theme of music into the story, there is a real sense of belonging and community in this little snapshot of a not-so-familiar NZ. Adrienne Jansen makes you care about the characters in this book.’

Crystal Reign is an eye-opening story about the dreadful effects of P on an ordinary family, written from the point of view of a man trying to hold his family and marriage together. The writing style is engaging and direct – exploring the raw emotions of what he is going through, as well as the toll it takes on those around him.’

Fishing for Māui is a portrait of a family moving through crisis. We are introduced to a large cast of characters in this book, and the author cleverly tells their stories through their own eyes, from very young, to very old. It cleverly interweaves Māori legends and a real sense of New Zealand and connection to the past and present. Drugs, mental health, families and cultures are never easy topics, but Isa Pearl Ritchie tackles them all.’

Grandzilla is a novel with multiple layers, plots and countries that come together to make this compelling reading. The author pulls off a clever mix of past and present, linking riots in 1960s Germany with present-day racial unrest in the USA. Grandzilla educates as well as entertains. Great characters and an enlightening read.’

This Mortal Boy is a beautifully drawn novel that brings a true story to life. It is the little touches that make this brilliant, the small observations of everyday events. We travel back to 1950s New Zealand, a time when a judge could put a man to death. Time is running out for Albert Black.’

A Year at the Hotel Gondola: ‘An enjoyable mix of Venice, romance and plenty of cooking recipes. This is a great holiday read, especially for anyone who has visited Venice. Apart from the love story and the mouth-watering food, it also addresses the current issues facing the residents of Venice with the overcrowding from too many tourists.’

LIFESTYLE
Better than a Bought One is not a regular recipe book. Sharing her love of entertaining, Jo inspires readers to celebrate life’s milestones at home. Her focus is on easy, economical ideas to mark everything from birthdays to backyard weddings, Matariki and a casual Kiwi Christmas. Jo’s trademark writing is accompanied by intoxicating photography that ensures readers will repeatedly refer to the book for memorable ideas.’

Eco Home is an essential read for anyone considering building or renovating their home. Melinda’s writing clearly communicates the benefits of going green and how to create an eco-friendly home. The gorgeous photography throughout further inspires sustainable living.’

Flourish: ‘This stunning book showcases the lives of women behind some of New Zealand’s most significant gardens. The wonderful photography is accompanied by delightful storytelling with inspirational messaging. Flourish is such an enjoyable read it will encourage even the most unlikely of green thumbs.’

The Natural Home: ‘This thoughtfully designed book inspires readers to live sustainable lives. Wendyl’s accessible writing makes old-fashioned, chemical-free living highly desirable. The Natural Home is a delightful, practical guide, including Wendyl’s best recipes from previous books.’

Ripe Recipes – A Third Helping: ‘This follow-up book from Ripe Deli’s Angela Redfern is bursting with flavour! Rediscover the seasons and turn each page to discover a scrumptious new dish. Angela has cleverly curated over 100 accessible recipes to inspire healthy eating at home.’

Wild Delicious: ‘This beautiful hardback is more than a recipe book, it is a culinary guide to slow living. Renowned chef Amber Rose encourages mindful food preparation using local, seasonal produce. Stunning images are accompanied by thoughtful writing that compels a well-nourished life.’

CHILDREN’S
Dear Donald Trump deals with incredibly complex and important issues through an innocent sibling drama. It’s a charming story that will spark a conversation with young children about kindness, compassion and peace in this turbulent time.’

Hero of the Sea: ‘A beautiful biographical picture book that allows a new generation of Kiwi kids to learn about Sir Peter Blake. A stellar tribute to one of New Zealand’s greatest heroes, with great illustrations from Phoebe Morris.’

Kuwi’s Rowdy Crowd is an absolute delight, with gorgeous illustrations and a wonderful subtle tale about being happy with what you have.’

Lyla sensitively and poignantly portrays the experience of a young girl living through the Christchurch earthquake, the courage that she shows at the time and during the aftermath and the effect it has on her and her family and friends.’

Puffin the Architect: ‘Witty, with wonderfully detailed illustrations. This is a great read-aloud book.’

Who Stole the Rainbow: ‘Snappy illustrations and humour make this book about how rainbows are made accessible and fun for a younger audience.’
MEDIA RELEASE AS PDF

ENDS

For more information, interviews or book covers, please contact NZ Booklovers Director Karen McMillan, 027 693 9044, karen_m@xtra.co.nz, www.nzbooklovers.co.nz

Ockham Book Awards logo

Ockhams’ 2019 Longlist Laden with Literary Luminaries

By Media Releases

Ockham Book Awards logo

Many of New Zealand’s literary heavyweights feature in the 40-strong Ockham New Zealand Book Awards longlist announced today.

The latest works of Lloyd Jones, Fiona Kidman, Maurice Gee and Vincent O’Sullivan are among the rich and varied range nominated for the country’s premier book awards, now in their 51st year.  They sit alongside debutants and rising stars whose books traverse sweeping contemporary, cultural, historic, artistic and social landscapes.

Ten books are longlisted in each of the four awards categories – fiction, general non-fiction, illustrated non-fiction and poetry.

New Zealand Book Awards Trust chair Nicola Legat says the Awards received a large number of entries again this year and the standard was extremely high across all categories. “The judges would have had a challenging task and it’s very gratifying and exciting to see the mix of established writers and younger emerging talent across all the longlist categories,” she says. “This signals a very encouraging situation for New Zealand literature.”

The 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards longlisted titles are:

Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize:

The Man Who Would Not See by Rajorshi Chakraborti (Penguin Random House)

The Life of De’Ath by Majella Cullinane (Steele Roberts Aotearoa Ltd)

The New Ships by Kate Duignan (Victoria University Press)

Mazarine by Charlotte Grimshaw (Penguin Random House)

Caroline’s Bikini by Kirsty Gunn (Faber & Faber)

The Cage by Lloyd Jones (Penguin Random House)

The Ice Shelf by Anne Kennedy (Victoria University Press)

This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman (Penguin Random House)

The Imaginary Lives of James Pōneke by Tina Makereti (Penguin Random House)

All This by Chance by Vincent O’Sullivan (Victoria University Press)

 

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction:

Filming the Colonial Past: The New Zealand Wars on Screen by Annabel Cooper (Otago University Press)

Song for Rosaleen by Pip Desmond (Massey University Press)

Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love by Joanne Drayton (Otago University Press)

Memory Pieces by Maurice Gee (Victoria University Press)

The Heart of Jesús Valentino: A Mother’s Story by Emma Gilkison (Awa Press)

We Can Make a Life by Chessie Henry (Victoria University Press)

Swim: A Year of Swimming Outdoors in New Zealand by Annette Lees (Potton & Burton)

The Vulgar Wasp: The Story of a Ruthless Invader and Ingenious Predator by Phil Lester (Victoria University Press)

With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War by Anna Rogers (Massey University Press)

Dear Oliver: Uncovering a Pākehā History by Peter Wells (Massey University Press)

 

Illustrated Non-Fiction Award:

Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand’s Native Forests by Paul Bensemann (Potton & Burton)

Galleries of Maoriland: Artists, Collectors and the Māori World, 1880-1910 by Roger Blackley (Auckland University Press)

The New Zealand Horse by Deborah Coddington and photographs by Jane Ussher (Massey University Press)

Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor edited by Bronwyn Holloway-Smith (Massey University Press)

Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing by Sean Mallon with Sébastien Galliot (Te Papa Press)

Mataatua Wharenui: Te Whare i Hoki Mai by Hirini Mead, Layne Harvey, Pouroto Ngaropo and Te Onehou Phillis (Huia Publishers)

Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand by Geoff Norman (Potton & Burton)

Whatever it Takes: Pacific Films and John O’Shea 1948-2000 by John Reid (Victoria University Press)

Down the Bay: A natural and cultural history of Abel Tasman National Park by Philip Simpson (Potton & Burton)

Hillary’s Antarctica: Adventure, Exploration and Establishing Scott Base by Nigel Watson, photographs by Jane Ussher (Allen & Unwin)

 

Poetry Award:

Edgeland and other Poems by David Eggleton (Otago University Press)

The Farewell Tourist by Alison Glenny (Otago University Press)

Are Friends Electric? by Helen Heath (Victoria University Press)

All of Us by Adrienne Jansen and Carina Gallegos (Landing Press)

There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime by Erik Kennedy (Victoria University Press)

The Facts by Therese Lloyd (Victoria University Press)

Winter Eyes by Harry Ricketts (Victoria University Press)

Walking to Jutland Street by Michael Steven (Otago University Press)

Poūkahangatus by Tayi Tibble (Victoria University Press)

Aspiring Daybook: The Diary of Elsie Winslow by Annabel Wilson (Mākaro Press)

 

 

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards shortlist will be announced on 6 March, 2019. The winners (including the four Best First Book Awards and a Māori Language Award, presented at the judges’ discretion) will be announced at a ceremony on 14 May, held as the first public event of the 2019 Auckland Writers Festival.

To find out more about the longlisted titles go to http://www.nzbookawards.nz/new-zealand-book-awards/2019-awards/longlist/

The Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize will award $53,000 in 2019. It is judged by journalist, reviewer and editor Sally Blundell, novelist and literary festival programme director Rachael King and novelist, short story writer and lecturer James George (Ngāpuhi). They will be joined by an international judge in deciding the ultimate winner from their shortlist of four.

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction is judged by award-winning historian and academic Angela Wanhalla; academic and award-winning science writer Rebecca Priestley and curator, educator and writer Karl Chitham (Ngāpuhi).

The Illustrated Non-Fiction Award is judged by writer and commentator Douglas Lloyd Jenkins; art curator and writer Lucy Hammonds; and long-time bookseller Bruce Caddy.

The Poetry Award is judged by three award-winning poets: Massey University Associate Professor Bryan Walpert; creative writing teacher Airini Beautrais and Karlo Mila, Pasifika poet who runs an indigenous leadership programme.

ENDS

For interview opportunities, author images, book cover images and further information please contact: Penny Hartill, director, hPR 09 445 7525, 021 721 424, penny@hartillpr.co.nz

#theockhams    facebook.com/NewZealandBookAwards             twitter.com/theockhams

 

Editors’ Notes:

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are the country’s premier literary honours for books written by New Zealanders and were established (as the Wattie Book Awards) in 1968. They are governed by the New Zealand Book Awards Trust (a registered charity), which also governs the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults and Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day.

Ockham Residential Group is Auckland’s most progressive developer. Founded in 2009 by Mark Todd and Ben Preston, Ockham describes itself as an urban regenerator, a company that loves Auckland.  The business has ambitions wider than profitability and has also established the Ockham Foundation, which aims to promote original thinking and critical thought — two key elements of widening the public discourse — via educational initiatives.

The Acorn Foundation is a community foundation based in the Western Bay of Plenty, which encourages people to leave a gift in their wills and/or their lifetimes to support their local community. Since it was established in 2003, Acorn has distributed over $4.6 million. The Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize has been provided through the generosity of one of the Foundation’s donors, and is awarded to the top fiction work each year, in perpetuity. Its base figure of $50,000 will be adjusted each year, to reflect wage inflation.

Royal Society Te Apārangi is an independent not-for-profit organisation that supports all New Zealanders to explore, discover and share knowledge. Its programmes provide funding and learning opportunities for researchers, teachers and school students and with those who are simply curious about the world. Its elected Fellows help the Society to provide independent advice to New Zealanders and the government on issues of public concern.

Creative New Zealand provides a wide range of support to New Zealand literature and has been a sustaining partner of New Zealand’s book awards for decades. Creative New Zealand encourages, promotes and supports the arts in New Zealand for the benefit of all New Zealanders through funding, capability building, an international programme, and advocacy.

The Auckland Writers Festival is the largest literary event in New Zealand and the largest presenter of New Zealand literature in the world. Festival attendance in 2018 exceeded 74,000.