Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
With the greatly increased interest by young people in Anzac Day in recent years there has been a noticeable upturn in book publishing for this market.
This year for example Scholastic are releasing four books with war themes:
The Red Poppy by David Hill, illustrations by Fifi Colson, song by Rob Kennedy
Five minutes …
Two minutes …
One minute …
soldier Jim McLeod waits in the trenches of World War I for the order to attack
the enemy. With him are his friends, and Nipper, the messenger dog. When they
charge across no-man’s-land, Jim is shot … and finds himself face to face with
an enemy soldier. Invitation to attend book launch.
When Empire Calls by Ken Catran
It’s early days in the Boer War and the small farming
community of Huia is gripped by patriotic fervour.
Men, young and old, are eager to join up and head overseas
to fight the ‘evil scoundrel folk in Africa who opposed the British Empire and
had to be taught a lesson’.
When his two elder brothers join up, James is left to
help his father run the family farm. He also helps old Croaky Fred in the local
village store, a bad-tempered old codger who has nothing good to say about war.
Through his brother Edward’s letters, James learns
about some of the horrors of war … but will both his brothers come home?
It is 1943 and
Lillian is brassed off. Until now she was like any normal city girl – at least,
as normal as you can be when there’s a terrible war on and your father is away
fighting. Then a spot is found on Lillian’s lung – tuberculosis.
Before she knows it, Lillian is packed off to recover on her
grandparents’ farm in Whangateau, near Warkworth. With no friends, and only her
preening older sister Joyce and their grandparents for company (and Grandad’s a
miserable blighter at the best of times), Lillian feels like a duck out of
water. That is, until the day a US Marine Division moves in down the road. That
afternoon, four Marines turn up on their doorstep wanting to buy milk.
Life in Whangateau is about to get a LOT more interesting
Lest We Forget by Feana Tu'akoi, illustrations by Elspeth Alix Batt
Tyson doesn't understand why Mum and Poppa would want to go to the Anzac Day Dawn Parade.
But then he hears stories about soldiers in his family and decides perhaps he should go to the Dawn Parade after all.