Recent necrology, April 2014

Some well-known people who have died recently: Rubin Carter, 1937-2014 Boxer wrongly convicted of murder who found Bob Marley fighting his corner Alan Davie, 1920-2014 Artist who won the admiration of Rothko and Pollock and later embraced ‘magic symbolism’ Bob Hoskins, 1942-2014 Actor who excelled as the tough but engaging anti-hero of Mona Lisa and…
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Sadly, I read it my way

Reading regrets, I've got a few... As this diary page from my "yoof" clearly illustrates. Desmond Bagley! Alistair MacLean! Gavin Lyall! And the pièce de resistance Jeffrey Archer! To be fair I was 15 when I was reading these über macho, high-octane thrillers but shame still stings my cheeks especially regarding the naughty Lord Archer…
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Happy Mother’s Day

Kia ora and Happy Mother's Day to all the Mums. Here are some Mums of days gone by: The hospital, a wooden building in Durham Street, Sydenham, had been opened about two years earlier. It was a birthing place for the wives of working men. The hospital was, like other hospitals, named St. Helen's to…
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Redneck Noir is Ace!

O.K., show of hands on the part of all those mature and discerning viewers of televised crime fiction who remain baffled and uncomprehending of Television New Zealand’s decision to discontinue what was arguably one of the most engaging, different, and exciting “redneck noir” crime fiction series to grace our Free to Air screens in recent…
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Challenged by the challenges

Well, it’s nearly half way through the year and I’m in a terrible mess with my challenges. Reading seven books off the Guardian’s List of Best Books of 2013 went swimmingly until I reached number seven: The Kills. It’s 1002 pages long. What was I thinking? Reading Bingo is also shaping up to be a bit of…
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Books for Babies

Each year we deliver about 5,000 Books for Babies packs to parents and babies through hospitals, midwives and the Homebirth Association. The pack contains a high-contrast black and white board book — perfect for very young babies up to about six months. Download the Books for Babies pamphlet — in English, Māori and Samoan. [194KB…
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