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Posts Tagged ‘NZ life’

The Night the moon fell Down by Bill Nagelkerke.

September 26, 2019 Comments off

poetryThe Night the moon fell Down by Bill Nagelkerke.  Copy Press Nelson, 2019.

This is the first book of poems that I have reviewed on this blog and it required some thinking of how I was going to do it.

It was obvious from the first poem as “One quick flick One sharp click One small bulb Scares away the big, dark night” that Bill was born to be a poet and that poetry helped him remember and understand his childhood.

He writes about playing football with a homemade ball, riding scooters with ‘My best friend’s Mother’s Mother’s Mother’s brother”, going to the supermarket for milk and buying a whole trolley full of other groceries.

His father was a baker because “he kneads the dough (sad joke I know” and his mother makes concrete cake. Xmas came from Holland in a parcel and Mount Cook “lost thirty feet The day it’s summit plummeted”.

He finishes with every writer’s nightmare “A pain at night Can sometimes be a poem in the head” and the last  poem is 25 words given to him by a teacher to make a poem. Superb.

Simple, easy to understand and a lot more than I have told you here.

For primary and secondary school readers.

Categories: Poetry Tags: , ,

Home Child by Dawn McMillan, illus. Trish Bowles.

April 9, 2019 Comments off

home childHome Child by Dawn McMillan, illus. Trish Bowles. Pub. Oratia Books, 2019.

This is the picture book story of Pat Brown, one of the children that Britain gave away in the 1950,s because of poverty or because they were orphans.

Many of these children had sad lives, sometimes abused and often unloved. Several hundred came to New Zealand and while Pat Brown had many sad moments  she was one of the lucky ones who had a happy life.

Dawn McMillan enhances Pat’s story of how she and her two brothers and sisters caught the boat from England, through the Panama Canal to the strange wooded hillsides of Wellington. Then a trip across Cook Strait and bus ride to Nelson. There Pat and Sheila were separated from Bill and Alma who were fostered elsewhere.

Pat tells the story to her granddaughter and there is a big surprise at the end. Read it and see what it is.

Trish Bowles captures every emotion in her illustrations. The sadness and tears of leaving home, the ship voyage out to NZ, the fun on board ship, the tragic separation of the children, the first day at school and the surprise ending.

A classy publication for everybody. Very moving.

Categories: Picture book Tags: , ,