The Friday Poem: Riding home from work by Marcel Currin

A new poem by Tauranga poet Marcel Currin.

‘We carry grief for people’: Francis Tipene on Life as a Casketeer

Funeral director Francis Tipene explains why you don't need to splurge on send-offs, how he keeps his act together – and why he cringes when people talk about 'closure'. 

Vincent O’Malley on the slashing of public reading hours at Archives NZ

Fresh off another Ockhams nomination, here's one of New Zealand's foremost historians on the realities of research – and the end of a golden era at our national archive. 

‘Weed in the dead of night’: A librarian shares the secrets of book-culling

Librarian Rebecca Hastie with a crash course on the fraught task of "weeding" – the systematic removal of resources from a library collection. 

Books Archive

Notes on burning: a stunning, apocalyptic essay by Kiwi crime writer JP Pomare

JP Pomare's new thriller In the Clearing is set in the Australian bush, with fire forever licking the horizon. He writes here about the view from over there. 

The Unity children’s bestseller chart for the month of January

What’s the best way to get adults reading? Get them reading when they’re children – and there’s no better place to start than the Unity Children’s Bestseller Chart.

Fearless and perfectly formed: Rose Lu’s All Who Live on Islands, reviewed

Brannavan Gnanalingham reads Rose Lu's groundbreaking essay collection – overlooked by the Ockhams judges – and finds it full of elevating yarns.

Unity Books bestseller chart for the week ending January 31

The only published and available best-selling indie book chart in New Zealand is the top 10 sales list recorded every week at Unity Books’ stores in High St, Auckland, and Willis St, Wellington. 

Breaking news: the Ockhams 2020 finalists, a chorus of triumph and travesty

Here are the 40 books that made it, followed by some frank thoughts from our books editor.

She liked it, she wanted it: The complex terrors of Mary Gaitskill’s This is Pleasure

'I finished This is Pleasure at about 4am on a Sunday. I hadn’t been able to sleep – I’d had an uncomfortable interaction with a powerful person, and it was keeping me awake ...'. Pip Adam on a book that challenged and changed her. 

The particular joy of barrelling into a bountiful back-catalogue

Scarlett Cayford stumbles, ravenous, into a glorious new world

How anxiety and illiteracy inspired a young adult fantasy series

A new fantasy series by Isa Pearl Ritchie focuses on a girl who struggles with anxiety and panic attacks. Here, Ritchie explains how her own childhood sparked Awa and the Dreamrealm.

Unity Books bestseller chart for the week ending January 24

The only published and available best-selling indie book chart in New Zealand is the top 10 sales list recorded every week at Unity Books’ stores in High St, Auckland, and Willis St, Wellington.

The Friday Poem: Howl by Katrina Upperton

A new poem by Palmerston North poet Katrina Upperton.

What was she thinking? A palagi on why she wrote in the voice of a Samoan

Petra Molloy's novel Chosen Boys is set in dawn-raids South Auckland – and written largely from the point of view of a Samoan mother. We asked Molloy, a palagi, to explain that choice and why she stands by it. 

The National Library cull of 600,000 books could be a disaster for researchers

The National Library says it is 'making room for more New Zealand and Pacific stories' and hopes the books it's purging might 'spark joy' for other people. David Larsen considers it a whacking great clear-cutting.