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An un-put-down-able New Zealand novel - 3rd Oct 2017

An un-put-down-able New Zealand novel Sue Younger's
Days are Like Grass; A Novel

This is a novel about the wounds a family can make; about a woman caught between the past and the present and about her need to keep everybody safe. Especially herself

A beautiful New Zealand summer. An ugly past that won't stay buried. Paediatric surgeon Claire Bowerman has returned to Auckland from London. She loves her job repairing her small patients' wounds; tragically, wounds sometimes made by the children's own families. Her partner wants to marry Claire. He thinks New Zealand is the safest place on earth, worlds away from the violence he knew growing up. But Claire's daughter is full of questions about their past. When a family refuses medical treatment for their boy, Claire's story is in the headlines again. (Copied that from the blurb on the back of the book)

This should be a good read so I'm taking a copy home for the weekend hoping for some sun and some reading time in between the gardening tasks!

Curious English expressions - 2nd Oct 2017

Curious English expressions Why do we go Dutch? Why does someone kick the bucket? Who let the cat out of the bag? Why do you have a gut feeling? Why will you go come hell or high water? What do you butter someone up with? Why is it a seven-year itch? 

If you've ever wondered about any of the above phrases, then this is the book for you:
The Guinness Book of Curious Phrases
by Leslie Dunkling

You can find out how and when approximately 2000 expressions came into use and what their original meaning was (which in many cases was totally different). It is full of intriguing information and fascinating quotes. 

So why not indulge in a little bone idleness while you peruse this book and learn a few facts by heart so you can take a leaf out of someone's book at the next do you attend!

Opinionated Kiwis - 29th Sep 2017

Grumpy Old Men and/or Stroppy Old Women
47 Kiwi Blokes and/or 52 Kiwi Women, who have been around long enough to know, Tell You What is Wrong with the World

There is a great selection of famous men and women in these books - Tau Henare, Ruth Pretty, Kevin Ireland, Sue Kedgley, Martin Phillipps, Karen Soich, Brian Turner, Judith Ablett-Kerr, Roger Hall, Anne Kennedy, Sam Neill, Ans Westra - to name but a few. Not only are they all in these books along with lots more famous New Zealanders but they are definitely not shy of describing what drives them to distraction - in amusing detail!

Topics covered run the gamut from words and manners to architecture, Christmas, news, economists, and everything in between. Some pieces are serious and some trivial but they are all entertaining and worth reading. These books are irresistible and the only possible complaint is that they come to an end too soon - we could have done with 147 or 152 grumpy old men and women.

Olives - 28th Sep 2017

Olives Olives: cooking with them; selecting the appropriate cultivar, planting the trees, managing pests; dealing with disease; pruning and thinning; harvesting; and pressing.

The olive has become a very popular crop in New Zealand over the last few years and lots of new olive groves are being planted every day. There is a lot more to starting your own olive grove than just shoving a few plants in the ground.

The Olive Book
by Gareth Renowden

This will tell you everything you need to know about growing olives and managing your trees, whether you have a commercial orchard or a few trees in your back garden. Furthermore, it is specifically written for Australian and New Zealand conditions. Grab a copy and get your first trees into the ground. You'll be dipping bread into your very own oil before you know it. 

Antarctic - 27th Sep 2017

Antarctic The Antarctic from the Circle to the Pole
Photography by Stuart D Klipper
Essays by Stephen Pyne and William Fox

For many people, and for very good reason, the Antarctic continent is an endless source of fascination. In this lovely book, the photography of Stuart Klipper presents the majestic Antarctic in all its glory. His photographs mainly attempt to capture the breathtaking scenery and wildlfe but he also includes some intriguing (or depressing?) images of man's presence there in the way of solitary flags, frozen ships, tyre tracks through the snow and isolated tents.

As well as the stunning photos, there are also two essays: Mirror from An Other World by William L Fox and Beyond the Barrier: Ice into Art by Stephen J Pyne. There is also an interesting introduction by Guy Guthridge concentrating on what we have learned about the Antarctic since the 1950s.

This is a must for lovers of the Antarctic or for photographers or natural history buffs.l


Otago Shipwrecks - 26th Sep 2017

Otago Shipwrecks Rocks, Reefs and Sandbars: A History of Otago Shipwrecks
by Bruce E Collins

This book covers almost 150 ships which were wrecked around the Otago coast over a period of 158 years from 1837 onwards.

The first was a whaler called Sydney Packet, a schooner of 84 tons which ran aground at Moeraki Bay. The last mentioned in this book was a fishing vessel called Vapour which was wrecked in 1994 near Waikouaiti.  Some of us probably remember the last being reported in the Otago Daily Times.

In between those two is a fascinating array of information about the wrecks and the human-interest stories associated with them. This is valuable as a reference work but is also very readable if you have an interest in shipwrecks, maritime history or the Otago coastline.


Islam and Muslim Art - 22nd Sep 2017

This book by Alexandre Papadopoulo is a really stunning work on the rich materials and wonderful imagination that is Muslim art.

Islam and Muslim Art translated by Robert Erich Wolf from the original French

The Islamic Empire stretched from Spain to India and lasted for several centuries from AD632 onwards. The architecture, art, painting, calligraphy, manuscripts, bookbinding, metalwork, ceramics and carpets are all beautifully presented in this book. You can feast your eyes on the mosques, minarets, courtyards, colonnades and cupolas and immerse yourself in the shimmering colours and intricate ornamentation that the Empire is famous for.

A copy of this book would make a great gift (for yourself or someone else)

Email Fixed - 19th Sep 2017

Email Fixed Our email is now working again - feel free to resend any recent messages if you think we may not have received them

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