Author Archives: alysonebaker

The Lost Dead by Finn Bell – 2019

The lost dead is a psychological thriller, not at all lacking in thrills but also working hard to round out the characters: the Rarua brothers, young Sophie, Eustus Grey and her fellow cops, and the psychopath: Charles Atkins – The … Continue reading

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The Nancys by R.W.R. McDonald – 2019

A small-town murder mystery with lots of suspects, dull police, amateur sleuths, a bundle of local secrets and lashings of glitter. Tippy Chan is 11 and living in Riverstone, South Otago: “Main Street was busy today … I counted seven … Continue reading

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Pūrākau: Māori Myths Retold by Māori Writers edited by Witi Ihimaera and Whiti Hereaka – 2019

After reading some works you just see the world differently, maybe for a moment, maybe a few hours or days, maybe permanently. Pūrākau was such a work for me.  Pūrākau is a collection of contemporary writings relating to Māori foundation … Continue reading

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Whatever It Takes by Paul Cleave – 2019

In Paul Cleave’s Whatever it takes we have moved away from his ‘gateway to hell’ Christchurch to Acacia Pines, a small isolated town in the U.S.  Acacia Pines is a sawmill town, surrounded by a “Green Hole” of forests, with … Continue reading

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Rufus Marigold by Ross Murray – 2019

Graphic Novels can be beautiful, informative, funny, moving and sad.  Rufus Marigold is all of these.  Rufus Marigold is the alter ego of the author, and he is living with anxiety.  He is depicted as a hybrid man/chimpanzee – successfully … Continue reading

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Pearly Gates by Owen Marshall – 2019

Pearly Gates is a very important man, in his own eyes.  He has been the Mayor of a small north Otago town for some years, and at the beginning of the book he is considering running for a third term.  … Continue reading

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The Unreliable People by Rosetta Allan – 2019

Identity is at the heart of this amazing novel, mainly set in post-perestroika Russia and Kazakhstan.  The Koryo-saram are ethnic Koreans, people Stalin termed The Unreliable People, descendants of those who fled to Vladivostok from Korea, who were then deported … Continue reading

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