Books

The Great War for New Zealand: Why political power and business interests shouldn't mix

Buddy Mikaere reviews the historical recount of New Zealand's wars and political climates in The Great War for New Zealand: Waikato 1800 – 2000 and the messages it has for the future.

Go and play outside: an ode to the joys of tramping

Been outside the house this summer? Actually done one of the Great Walks? John Summers reviews a new book which ponders the nature of the hike, the tramp, the trail.

Once upon a time in Altamont: the music festival to end all music festivals

Philip Matthews examines three new books looking back at the day the music died: December 6, 1969, when the Hells Angels murdered a guy at a Rolling Stones concert.

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Summer reissue: A killing in Ruatoria

One of the most remarkable books ever written about crime, race, religious voodoo, and the New Zealand way of life and death is the Ngati Dread trilogy by journalist Angus Gillies. He self-published these three very strange and quite epic accounts of a five-year period (1985-1990) when there was a kind of Maori Rasta uprising in Ruatoria. They burned down houses, the police station, woolsheds, churches and even a marae. They kidnapped a cop. They were in a trance of prophecies, visions, and pot. On the morning of July 22, 1985, three local men climbed up a sacred hill….The following extract is from Footsteps of Fire, volume one of Gillies' trilogy, and based on witness statements at the murder trial of Joe Nepe.