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Books in the My New Zealand Story series

Books » Series » My New Zealand Story

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“A re-release of Canterbury Quake for a new audience. Anyone would think Maddys world had crumbled when she didnt get a cell phone for her eleventh birthday. But Maddy soon has far more important things to worry about. In the dark of night, with a terrifying rumble and a deafenin. ..g roar, the world turns upside down! Suddenly, words like ‘liquefaction,’ ‘aftershocks’ and ‘state of emergency’ bubble to the surface of her vocabulary. As Maddy navigates the bumps and crashes of life after the big quakes, she discovers how strong family ties can be, and finds friendship in the most unlikely of places”–Publisher information.
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Reuben Radcliffe’s father owns the store in the small township of Waipapa. When the bank forecloses on a loan, Reuben and his family are forced to leave their home and move into a tent. With no money and little food, Reuben has to leave school and find work. Heading north with hi… s father, Reuben joins a gang of Dalmatian gumdiggers.
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“Auckland in the 1950s: a time of rock’n’roll, milk bars, bodgies and widgies and teenage rebellion. The Auckland Harbour Bridge is under construction. Simon likes watching the bridge being built, and talking to his uncle and his mates about what’s happening on site. Meanwhile, S…imon’s best friend Marty is obsessed with the Space Race and younger sister Jo can’t stop worrying about the fate of the dogs and monkeys that are the world’s first space travellers. Everyone says that life on the North Shore will change once the bridge is finished …but what does that mean for Simon and his family?–Publisher information.
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The story starts on the 25th of June, 1930 – a sad day in the Bourke household – the funeral of Katie’s father. This Catholic family must now survive with earnings from the older siblings and the washing Katie’s mother takes in. Then, in February 1931, disaster strikes the small …town …
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“Maddy is a typical 11-year-old girl living in Christchurch – her diary starts in early August with her desperate for a mobile phone, and talking about her best friend Laura, Glee and singing in the school choir, homework, teachers, her siblings … And then the first earthquake …hits on 4 September and her world changes”–Publisher information.
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“For Frances and her family, living on a lighthouse, the war is both far away and scarily close. There are rumours of submarines in the Pacific. The Japanese have attacked Pearl Harbor, taken Singapore and bombed Darwin, so what’s to stop them invading New Zealand next? But soon …Frances, the only girl on the island, will have more to worry about than the threat of a Japanese invasion”–Publisher’s information. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.
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The Rainbow Warrior was the flag ship of the Greenpeace movement, when it was sunk by agents of the French Foreign Intelligence, while anchored in Auckland harbour, on the 10th of July 1985. In this story thirteen-year-old Rowan Webb gets herself a French penpal and unwittingly b…ecomes involved in an event that not only shocks a nation, but the whole world. Includes historical notes.
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“Fictionalised diary of Amy Dyer who is caught up in Cyclone Bola in Gisborne, 1988. Amy is a twelve-year-old Auckland girl whose parents have left her to stay on a vineyard in Gisborne with relatives while they go on a sailing trip. Cyclone Bola strikes, sending the area into ch…aos. Amy doesn’t hear from her parents for weeks and fears they are lost at sea. Gisborne is ravaged by the cyclone and afterwards there is much work to be done clearing up. Amy stays on and helps the community and her family on the vineyard. Her parents eventually return and the family is reunited”–Publisher’s information. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.
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Samuel, the keeper of this diary, is 13 when he signs on as a cabin boy aboard a vessel bound for Sydney. The barque Dundonald sinks off Disappointment Island in the ocean south of New Zealand on 6 March 1907. Fifteen survivors endure a harsh winter on this remote island until th. ..eir rescue in late November that year.
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Index by Series Name

Explore and Discover Nature: My Books

Here’s my great line up of children’s books. Most are available in both paperback and hardback, you can find them in all good bookstores or online at Potton and Burton. Also on the Potton and Burton website is additional information for children and ideas and activities for parents and teachers.

New Zealand Nature Heroes: Inspiration and activities for young conservationists is aimed at 8-14 year olds. 80 pages of inspiring stories about conservationists, accompanied by natural history facts and authentic activities that young people can do so that they too can be nature heroes. Conservationists featured include those from the past such as Richard Henry and Perrine Moncrieff, the famous such as Don Merton and Ingrid Visser, contemporary conservationists Pātaka Moore & Caleb Royal and Nicola Toki, and young nature heroes such as George Hobson and Riley Hathaway.
Further information about New Zealand Nature Heroes can be found at This includes more nature hero activities and up-to-date links and nature hero news.

Animals of Aotearoa: explore & discover New Zealand’s wildlife is the latest addition to the explore & discover series, illustrated by Ned Barraud.  Animals of Aotearoa is a compendium of native and introduced wildlife for children aged 4-8 years old. It’s 112 pages long and available in hardback only.

Discover the different species of kiwi, bats and native frogs. Explore the animal kingdom, learn about insects and spiders and other invertebrates. Find out about both native and introduced animals.

Whose Home is This? is a guessing game picture book featuring New Zealand native animals. From birds’ nests and animal burrows to simple camouflage and shells, many animals make a home to raise their young or protect themselves. Children will have fun while learning more about amazing native animals such as hoiho/yellow-eyed penguins, giant snails and octopus. Whose Home is This? was a finalist in the 2019 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults.

For more ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for parents and educators, read here.

Whose Feet are These? is a guessing game picture book featuring New Zealand native animals. From the familiar wētā and kākāpo to the less well known peripatus and short-tailed bat, these animals have feet uniquely adapted to their lifestyle. Children will have fun while they learn about animal adaptations. Illustrated by Fraser Williamson. I was interviewed about this book on 12 April 2017 by Bee Trudgeon of Porirua Library here. Make a gecko with sticky feet. Whose Feet are These? received a Storylines Notable Book Award in 2017.

For more ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see here.

Whose Beak is This? is a guessing game picture book featuring New Zealand native birds. From the familiar kiwi and tui to the less well known wrybill and spoonbill, these birds have quirky and interesting beaks. Children will have fun while they learn about animal adaptations. Illustrated by Fraser Williamson. Whose Beak is This? was a finalist in the 2016 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults and was awarded a Storylines Notable Book Award in 2016.
Make a kaka mask or kiwi beak book corner. Or print out this free download to match beaks to birds.
For more ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, read more here.

The “explore and discover” series – these factual books about New Zealand are designed for 4-8 year olds. Written by Gillian Candler and illustrated by Ned Barraud, they show living creatures in habitats that are familiar and interesting to young children.  Positive feedback about the books tells us that they are enjoyed by toddlers, older children and adults too!

Up the River: explore and discover New Zealand’s rivers, lakes and wetlands introduces children to the special wildlife that make their home in healthy waterways. Children will learn about amazing journeys that fish make, incredible life-cycles of aquatic insects and unusual habitats such as braided rivers. Following a similar format to At the Beach this makes a great companion book, as At the Beach includes estuary habitats; and also to In the Bush as bush streams are included in Up the River.

From Moa to Dinosaurs: explore and discover ancient New Zealand takes the reader back in time from 1000 years ago to over 100 million years ago. As they turn the pages, children will learn about ancient survivors such as tuatara, recently extinct animals such as moa, going right back to long-extinct dinosaurs and ammonites. Along the way they will discover that New Zealand was also once home to giant penguins and crocodilians. Explanations of Gondwana, fossils and evidence that scientists use to uncover the past, all extend the interest level of this book up to 12 years. I learned a lot about scientific advances while researching for this book, you can read about some of what I learned here.  For ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see here. From Moa to Dinosaurs was a finalist in the 2017 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults.

In the Bush: explore and discover New Zealand’s native forests takes readers into the bush, during the day and at night. Habitats include the forest floor, the undergrowth, the canopy, an emergent rimu tree, the beech forest and the forest sanctuary. Find out about the danger posed by introduced predators to our native animals. A laminated card in the back of the first print run of books can be used to identify forest birds. This card is no longer included, print out a free copy of the forest bird card.

For ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see here.

Under the Ocean: explore and discover New Zealand’s sea life looks at the life in reefs, on the sea floor, the open ocean and the deep ocean. Learn more about New Zealand’s sea life, including animals that spend some time on land and some in the sea. Under the Ocean was named a Storylines Notable Book in 2015, was on the longlist for the 2015 Lianza Children’s Book Awards, and was a finalist in the 2015 New Zealand Children’s Book Awards.

For ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see Tips for Reading With Children – Under the Ocean.

In the Garden: explore and discover the New Zealand backyard shows garden birds, bees, worms, insects, spiders, lizards and much more. Learn about the what lives in the ground, the plants and the trees. In the Garden was named a Storylines Notable Book in 2014.

For ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see here.

At the Beach: explore and discover the New Zealand seashore covers sandy beaches, mudflats and rocky shores. It comes with a removable laminated card suitable for taking to the beach to help identify what you see there. At the Beach was a finalist in the 2013 New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards and won the Elsie Locke Medal for Non-Fiction in the 2013 Lianza Awards.

For ideas on reading this book, activities and notes for educators, see here.

World of Books | Buy cheap second-hand books online

Sell us your used books too!

We believe no book should be read once or have a single owner.

With Ziffit, by World of Books, you can earn cash for your pre-loved books and let their stories live on.

Why we love being a B Corp

We know, we say it a lot. But what does it really mean, and why do we wear this status with so much pride?
Every certified B Corp uses its profits and growth to propel positive change and impact for their employees, communities and the environment. That’s the bottom line.
Here’s a few of the key reasons why we love being a B Corp…

7 Reasons to Buy Used Books

As a used bookseller, we really do find that buying used books is the way to go. Our seven reasons below are a great starting point for getting to know World of Books and realising how great a used book can be.

The Journey of a Book

At World of Books, we were founded on an ethos to do good, help charities, and protect the planet; it’s what we’re all about. Because of this, the journey of a book can be a wild one!
We get our books from a number of sources. Last year, we generated £3 million in value for our charity partners, who provide us with many of our books. We use book banks and our customers can even trade-in their used books using our Ziffit service. This is the circular economy in action.

Welcome to the Wonderful World of Books

If you’re looking for great value second hand books, then World of Books is the place for you.

As you may already know, we aren’t like other online book stores. For starters, we don’t believe that books should only be read once, or have a single owner. Literature should endure and be continually recycled, which is why we help millions of used books find new homes every year.

World of Books also buys directly from charities, taking the titles they don’t want or haven’t got space for. So as well as preventing the destruction of perfectly good books, our customers are helping to support good causes too.

Cheap Books, Fantastic Choice

Browse through hundreds of thousands of titles today. Whether you’re a fan of crime fiction or celebrity autobiographies, classic literature or modern best sellers, we have it all. Better still, our books are available at the cheapest prices and come with free delivery in the UK too.

So booklovers, academics and casual readers, rejoice! There’s something for everyone at World of Books, and it won’t cost the earth.

FAQ’s | Unity Books

Do you sell books online?
We have an online shop at
Both Unity Books stores are connected but their stock is independent. The titles for sale on are from Unity Books Wellington only – as such all orders will be posted from out of Wellington.

Although we do stock a lot of similar titles we also vary quite vastly in certain areas. If you’re interested in purchasing books from Unity Books Auckland, please contact them directly (09) 307 0731 or email them on [email protected]


I have faulty products, who should I contact?
Please contact us directly by either calling 0800 486 489 or emailing us on [email protected]


What are your opening hours?

Monday-Friday 8:30am-7pm ~
Saturday 9am-6pm ~
Sunday 10am-6pm

Monday-Thursday 9am-6pm ~
Friday 9am-7pm ~
Saturday 10am-6pm~
Sunday 10am-5pm

I keep forgetting my 11-for-10 card and now I have seventy of them. What do I do?
If you bring the 11-for-10 cards in together, we will happily consolidate them for you.


If I bring a receipt in can I add the books to my 11-for-10 card?
I’m afraid not, we do all 11-for-10 card work at the point of sale. If you do not have your card on you at the time, we will happily give you another one and you can consolidate them later. This is because as our 11-for-10 cards are handwritten by the staff, there is no evidence on a receipt that books have not already been accounted for. We endeavour to offer a card with every purchase.


What is your refund policy?
If there is a fault with the publishing in the book you purchased then we can replace the book for you at no extra cost. We may need to send away for a replacement copy from the publishers, so there could be a wee wait.

If you wish to return a book and it has not been damaged and you have a proof of purchase then we can supply you with a book voucher to the same value of the book you’re returning. The voucher will be for our store and valid for 12 months from date of exchange, so you can take your time choosing again. This does also depend on the amount of time passed since the book was initially purchased.


Do you take Booksellers tokens?
Unity Books is a member of Booksellers NZ and as such we do accept and sell Booksellers tokens in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $25, $50, and $100. We also accept and sell our own Unity Books tokens which we can write out to any amount you require.


If I order something do I have to buy it?
If you put your name against something that is already coming in for stock to see whether it is what you’re after then no, there is no obligation to purchase. However if we special order a book for you that we do not normally keep in stock, we do expect that you will pick it up within a couple of weeks of it arriving. Firmer details are discussed when you place an order, including price and time frame.

Exceptions can always be made though, if the situation allows – so never be afraid to ask in advance!


What are my different shipping options?

We offer a range of shipping options covering delivery within New Zealand and internationally. For advice on choosing the right shipping option for you and an estimated delivery time please contact the store at [email protected] or on 04 499 4245.



Our Privacy Policy

Who we are

Unity Books Wellington is a book retailer in Wellington, New Zealand, and online. Our website is also at and


What personal data we collect and why we collect it

We collect personal information from you, including information about your:

  • name
  • contact information
  • interactions with us
  • billing or purchase information

We collect your personal information in order to:

  • Sell books to consumers New Zealand-wide.

Your personal information will be held confidentially. The only people with access to personal information are our staff and those providing software services to Unity Books. If we share information with a service provider, your privacy will be protected through a non-disclosure agreement.

Cookies & Remarking Tools

  1. Site analytics cookies – these cookies allow us to measure and analyse how our members/visitors use the site, to improve both its functionality and your experience using our site.
  2. Targeting or advertising cookies – we do not use targeting or advertising cookies.

By using our site, you agree to us placing these sorts of cookies on your device and accessing them when you visit the site in the future. If you want to delete any cookies that are already on your computer, the “help” section in your browser should provide instructions on how to locate the file or directory that stores cookies. Further information about cookies can be found at Please note that by deleting or disabling future cookies, your user experience may be affected and you might not be able to take advantage of certain functions of our site, and the complete Unity Books user experience that we pride ourselves on providing our customers.

We do not store credit card details after the transaction has occurred. We keep your information safe by storing information in a secure database and only allowing certain staff to access it.

You have the right to ask for a copy of any personal information we hold about you, and to ask for it to be corrected if you think it is wrong. If you’d like to ask for a copy of your information, or to have it corrected, please contact us at [email protected], or +64 4 499 4245, or 57 Willis Street, Wellington 6011.

If you visit our login page, we will set a temporary cookie to determine if your browser accepts cookies. This cookie contains no personal data and is discarded when you close your browser.


How long we retain your data

For users who register on our website, we also store the personal information they provide in their user profile. All users can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time. Website administrators can also see and edit that information.

For users who register for our email newsletter you can unsubscribe at any time.

What rights you have over your data

If you have an account on this site, you can request to receive a file of the personal data we hold about you, including any data you have provided to us. You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.

Where we send your data

We do not supply or sell customer information to any external company.

This Pākehā Life


‘One of the most critical Pākehā books to come out this year is undoubtedly This Pākehā Life: An Unsettled Memoir by Alison Jones. Shortlisted for the Ockham NZ Book Awards, This Pākehā Life is truly a vital read for all those who consider themselves allies to tāngata whenua. Alison Jones can interrogate whiteness in a universally approachable way.’
Anna McAllister, Pantograph Punch, 5 May 2021. 

‘I have been recommending this book to everyone. And those who have accepted my recommendation are now recommending it to others. Its story may at first seem to be a modestly low-key one, but it quickly proves to have a powerful impact, with resonances that will be personal for every reader.’
Lindsay Shelton, Scoop Review of Books, 23 December 2020.

‘She maps a rough path toward a Pākehā identity that avoids the dead-end positions of guilt and blame and ignores shallow branding exercises associated with national identity … Instead, she models a renegotiation of ‘Pākehā-ness’ in relation to Māori that is respectful, honest and, she suggests, positive.’
Sally Blundell, North & South, December 2020.

‘I enjoyed this book on so many different levels that it is hard to unpack them. It is a scholarly memoir, addressing an issue of profound importance for Aotearoa New Zealand, as we embrace our past in order to create a new and better future, and it is also a work of social history, interesting in itself to a New Zealander, but extraordinarily so to someone like me, who found resonances of my own experience in so many of its instances.’
Nesta Devine, NZ Journal of Educational Studies, October 2020.

‘The results feel more like a book of wisdom and experience rather than being preachy social commentary or heavy-handed writing; the reader is allowed to deeply dwell in all the novelties of twentieth century New Zealand society and upbringing while still feeling like they have just read a forceful account of identity, whiteness, and relationship.’
Andrew Clark-Howard, Metanoia, 19 October 2020.

‘I am relieved to read an author who professes doubt rather than certainty, awkwardness rather than ease; who asks questions and offers diffident answers; who relates anecdotes pointing to failure, bafflement, disappointment and occasional success. As Alison Jones says towards the end of This Pākehā Life, “My position was not – and is not – a confident one.”‘
Tim Upperton, NZ Listener, 10 October 2020.

‘She asks a lot of hard questions that Pākehā New Zealanders need to ask themselves and so I think it’s brave and bold to be able to do that … this is just the beginning of a conversation that’s going to keep going on.’
Jenna Todd, 95bfm, Loose Reads, 5 October 2020.

‘This Pākehā Life is an important and timely invitation for Pākehā to look more deeply into the psychology of identity and belonging, using Jones’s own life as a starting point. By sifting through her history, set against the political and cultural time in which she has lived, the personal becomes universal.’
Caroline Barron, Kete, 15 September 2020 and published on Stuff, 19 September 2020.

‘“The desire for redemption is a powerful urge,” Alison Jones writes of the Pakeha “need for recognition that we are not ‘all bad’ in our history”. In this searingly honest, bighearted, erudite and compellingly humble memoir, Jones contends that understanding “the details of our history is a good place to start”.’
Stephanie Johnson, NZ Herald Canvas magazine & Academy of New Zealand Literature, 12 &16 September 2020.

‘My New Zealand Story’ — reading history

You’re likely to be already familiar with the popular My New Zealand Story series, written by some of New Zealand’s favourite children’s authors. The diary-style format and local setting make them accessible and engaging reads, for young and old.

‘My New Zealand Story’ books

Understand history through stories

Fictional stories, based on real-life events like these, are also a great way of extending student knowledge and understanding of a topic by turning facts and figures into relatable feelings and actions. With the recent addition of Dawn Raid by Pauline (Vaeluaga) Smith, winner of the 2018 Best First Book Award, we felt it high time we revisited some of our favourites from the series. Journeying through time from the early 1800s to today, the My New Zealand Story series bring history to life.

Set in 1840, Mission Girl (previously published as A New Song in the Land) follows Atapo, a young Māori girl at the forefront of the Treaty of Waitangi. This story helps bring about an understanding of early Māori/Pākehā relations, as well as Māori culture and the qualities of leadership. Also set in 19th century New Zealand are Gold and Gumdigger, which are centred around (you guessed it!) the Otago goldrush and Northland Kauri gumdiggers, both important events that shaped early New Zealand history.

Moving into the 20th century, Earthquake! takes the reader into depression-era Napier, where Katie’s family are just getting by. And then the devastating earthquake hits. As a country, we are no strangers to earthquakes, which gives readers the opportunity to draw parallels between their experience and knowledge now versus then. Taking the disaster theme into the 1950s and 1960s are Journey to Tangiwai and The Wahine Disaster. Both feature resilient characters overcoming challenges as well as building a strong sense of New Zealand daily life during that time. Archival photos and historical notes tie-up the stories nicely and help to build imagination.

Marching forward into the 1970s, we meet Sofia in Dawn Raid. This story gives an insight into the racial prejudices of the time against immigrants and the peaceful protest movement rallied against it. As readers we can draw inspiration from Sofia who finds courage to stand up for her rights. Our Book and Beyond Guide to ‘Dawn Raid’ is a useful starting point for conversations with students around the book and their responses to it. Bastion Point and Sitting on the Fence, based on the Springbok rugby tour of New Zealand in 1981, continue the protest theme both of which parallel protest movements against racial prejudice and injustice.

By engaging with children’s literature and recommending books to students, regardless of the subjects you teach, you are supporting and encouraging them to read for pleasure and helping them grow in their reading confidence. A great way to engage students — junior and senior — with books is by reading aloud. A book set in your local area, such as a My New Zealand Story, can help draw students in as they imagine their surroundings from a different point of view.

Happy reading.

Further reading

You can download teacher notes for these books from the Scholastic website.

Check out our other guides for exploring children’s and YA literature.

Visit the following Topic Explorer sets for related digital resources:

NZ Pacific Picture Book Collection – University of Waikato – Faculty of Education

…learn more

Written by Catherine Hannken

Illustrated by Trish Bowles

Publisher Wellington, New Zealand: Mallinson Rendel, 2007

…learn more
Fishing with Spider Webs

Written by Lino Nelisi

Illustrated by Elspeth Alix Batt

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Ashton Scholastic Ltd, 1994

…learn more

Written by Janet Pereira

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 2006

…learn more
Legends of the Cook Islands

Written by Shona Hopkins

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Puffin Books, 2010

…learn more
Two Cans of Corned Beef and a Manulele in a Mango Tree

Written by Sarona Aiono-Iosefa

Illustrated by Steve Dunn

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 2004

…learn more
Maui and the Big Fish

Written by Barbara Ker Wilson

Illustrated by Franc Lessac

Publisher Great Britain: Frances Lincoln Ltd, 2003

…learn more
Ko Maui Mo e Fangufangú – Maui and the Nose Flute

Written by Sione Tu‘itahi

Illustrated by Henele Vaka

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: PIERC Education, 1998

…learn more
O La‘u Ā‘oga ‘Āmata – My Preschool

Written by Tolo Pereira

Illustrated by Dwain Aiolupotea

Publisher Porirua, New Zealand: Samoana Early Education Development Services Ltd (SEEDS), 2010

…learn more
O La‘u ‘Ato Ā‘oga – My School Bag

Written by Tolo Pereira

Illustrated by Dwain Aiolupotea

Publisher Porirua, New Zealand: Samoana Early Education Development Services Ltd (SEEDS)

…learn more
Lama I le Pō – Night Fishing for my Birthday

Written by Tuala F. Tiresa Malietoa

Illustrated by Vaioleti Samata Uili

Publisher Apia, Samoa: Nui Leaf Publications, 2003

…learn more
O le Fa‘aipoipoga

Written by Emma Kruse Vaai

Illustrated by Regina Meredith

Publisher Apia, Samoa: Niu Leaf Publications, 2005

…learn more
A Book of Pacific Lullabies

Edited by Tessa Duder

Illustrated by Anton Petrov

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: HarperCollins, 2001

…learn more
Pania of the Reef

Written and illustrated by Peter Gossage

Publisher North Shore, New Zealand: Puffin Books, 2008

…learn more
Papa’s Donuts

Written by Kate Moetaua

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 2006

…learn more
Papa’s Jandals

Written by Kate Moetaua

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Puffin Books, 2010

…learn more
The Peace Bird

Written by Eleitino Paddy Walker

Illustrated by Nanette Lela‘ulu


…learn more
Pou and Miri Tackle Climate Change

Written by Dom Sansom

Publisher Fiji: Secretariat of the Pacific Community, 2011

…learn more

Written by Catherine Hannken

Illustrated by Trish Bowles

Publisher Wellington, New Zealand: Mallinson Rendel, 2003

…learn more
Sina and Tinilau

Written by Vilsoni Hereniko

Illustrated by Jasper Schreurs

Publisher Suva, Fiji: Institute of Pacific Studies, University of South Pacific in association with the Fiji Writers’ Association, 1997

…learn more
Sione’s Talo

Written by Lino Nelisi

Illustrated by Elspeth Williamson

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Ashton Scholastic Ltd, 1993

…learn more
Sole! goes to Rotorua

Written by Fata and Paula Letoa

Illustrated by Tony Rush

Publisher New Zealand: Paua Publishing, 2002

…learn more
Sole! White Sunday

Written by Fata and Paula Letoa

Illustrated by Tony Rush

Publisher New Zealand: Paua Publishing, 2002

…learn more

Written by Catherine Hannken

Illustrated by Trish Bowles

Publisher Wellington, New Zealand: Mallinson Rendel, 2009

…learn more
Tane Te Whetū o te Ra – Tane steals the show

Written by Lino Nelisi

Illustrated by Gus Hunter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Scholastic, 1997

…learn more
Tangaroa’s Gift

Written by Mere Whaanga-Schollum

Illustrated by Mere Whaanga-Schollum

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Ashton Scholastic, 1990

…learn more
The Magic Seashell

Written by Makerita Urale

Illustrated by Samuel Sakaria

Publisher Wellington, New Zealand: Steele Roberts Ltd for the Pacific Education Resources Trust, 1999

…learn more
The Pipi Swing

Written by Sarona Aiono-Iosefa

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 2007

…learn more
The Shark God

Written by Rafe Martin

Illustrated by David Shannon

Publisher New York, USA: Scholastic Press, 2001

…learn more
The stuck-there-forever boat

Written by Gillian Torckler

Illustrated by Bruce Potter

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Puffin Books, 2008

…learn more
The Wooden Fish

Written by Tim Tipene

Illustrated by Jennifer Cooper

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 1999

…learn more
Kete Harakeke – Woven Flax Kete

Written by Angie Belcher

Illustrated by Denise Durkin

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Reed Publishing Ltd, 2003

…learn more
Tulevai and the Sea

Written by Joy Cowley

Illustrated by Manu Smith

Publisher Auckland, New Zealand: Ashton Scholastic Ltd, 1995

…learn more
Turtle Songs: A Tale for Mothers and Daughters

Written by Margaret Olivia Wolfson

Illustrated by Karla Sachi

Publisher Oregon, USA: Beyond Words Publishing, Inc. , 1999

…learn more
Ulu u I Lalo – Upside-down face

Written by Lemalu Ros. Afamasaga

Illustrated by Donna R. Kamu

Publisher Apia, Samoa: Nui Leaf Publications, 2003

…learn more
Watercress Tuna and the Children of Champion Street

Written by Patricia Grace

Illustrated by Robyn Kahukiwa

…learn more
Pe‘ā ‘ou alu I le Lotu – When I go to church

Written by Tolo Pereira

Illustrated by Dwain Aiolupotea

Publisher Porirua, New Zealand: Samoana Early Education Development Services Ltd (SEEDS), 2010

The creation of the New Zealand Pacific Picture Book Collection is primarily motivated by a strong belief in the power of picturebooks, and their ability to carry knowledge and world views which validate the home culture of some children, and introduce knowledge to others.

The New Zealand Pacific Picture Book Collection is a collection of 36 picture books nominated by nine librarians based in New Zealand with specific responsibility for providing library services for Pasifika communities in New Zealand. It was created in order to make the limited number of books representing Pasifika stories and knowledge easily accessible to classroom teachers, and to provide suggestions for classroom activities linked to the New Zealand curriculum in order to integrate this knowledge into New Zealand classrooms.

The New Zealand Pacific Picture Book Collection books are not available as a unit, but most will be found in school libraries or through the National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Matauranga o Aotearoa.

Thanks for using this website. You may notice that some of the books mentioned have gone out of print or are difficult to locate, and we apologise for that. The collection was created in 2012 and as time passes more books will go out of print. We hope you may be able to access some of the books through libraries nonetheless, or at least make use of the ideas in the resources. If you wish to find out more about the work of the Waikato Picturebook Research Unit (WaiPRU), please go to our site

Ngā Mihi


Oksana Demchenko “NZ” – review Akdmehp

I read this little-known book using a flash mob (at the time of publication, my review will be the second).
The book can be roughly divided into two parts (very subjective): “what I liked” and “what I did not like much”; and although the opinion is only personal, I am sure that it will help you decide whether to read this book or not.
Recently I have been looking for something unusual in the genre of fantasy and science fiction.I want something that goes beyond the canons, maybe even postmodern, with a strange look at ordinary things. This is what I got in this book.
Yes, although this is a common “hit”, but the plot is built in a rather unusual way, there are many intrigues, sometimes the truth is completely incomprehensible. The world of the Universe is really unusual, it is inhabited by different races with their own customs, which are trying to get along within the same world.
But what didn’t I like?
A lot of “strange” words. And if Krysty’s critics liked it, then I was rather tired when I was already just losing the narrative line because of these strange words.
But the main disadvantage from me is the terrible (in my opinion) language. Yard. All so ironic and close to the realities of the conversation of a typical know-it-all-selfish. Sima is all so ironic, not like everything that gets sick from it. I do not demand the lofty, refined language of Ayn Rand, when all the characters speak in philosophical treatises, but this is overkill! It was decidedly disgusting to read it. All the thoughts of the main character caused a strong rejection precisely because of this language.
Therefore, I advise you to read 5 pages.If you don’t like this as well as I do, quit right away. If you like it – well, then you are the target audience of such a speech, enjoy it.

The type of thinking of people like the main character is disgusting to me. Her jokes never made me smile, but caused death melancholy. If I met such a person in real life, I would make a lot of efforts so that I would never face them again.

Plot … I wish I could understand at least half of all the actions I read about! The construction of the plot is strange, the heroine rushes from one scene to another, and between them everything is generally incomprehensible. Unfortunately, one feels that there is something in this story (I managed to finish reading this book, albeit a little “stepping over myself”), but the author of the book simply did not manage to present this story in an accessible way. A lot of strange characters that are not even undisclosed – you just do not understand what is happening to them and why they are doing anything at all. Plus, the author does not suffer much from any descriptiveness, but gives many terms or phenomena as a fact – go and figure out what everything means there !….

And in parallel, the whole story is mixed with mercy and “she is an empath” (oh, this is a word, probably fifty times, it was even taken out into a small dictionary!). Haha, did a search for empath in the book: 47 times! Moreover, mainly in the phrase “I am an empath” or “you are an empath, you have …” – are you serious ?! Yes, we understood from the first time that an empath! Why repeat 47 times in the book ?! Will this make her more of an empath? No, it won’t work here. There is no need to prove this by repeating every 10 pages with the phrase “I am an empath” – prove it with a PLOT! But this did not work, I would even want to – I could not talk about the plot because of its looseness.

Oddly enough, the only storyline I liked was the story of William Wayne. If the book had been written in such a speech as in the “non-lyrical” digressions (to quote the title of the chapters), the review would have been completely different. He really empathized with this character, understood his motivation, there is some kind of drama and intrigue in the story, and his actions are really noble and without personal mutual benefit.
It’s a shame that he was shoved into the background of the plot, and he interacted too little with the main character, who was mostly annoying and uninteresting.

Total, to read this book or not – decide for yourself. Perhaps you will find something good in it, you will like the language very much, and you will like the ragged incomprehensible plot. But for me personally, this greatly spoiled my impressions. Well, every flash mob is a risk, and now I got acquainted with this type of literature, which once again reminded me, for which I sometimes do not like Russian science fiction / fantasy writers, in which the main characters are Russian characters.

P. S. I was ahead of me by several hours and my review is the third.It happens!

Handmade by NZ: my handicraft sketches

Starting to write another blog post, I suddenly realized that I hadn’t really met you, the readers of my page!)) Telling stories from my childhood, I forgot to tell about the present, about myself, about my momentary life, I just wrote briefly on the page ” About me “)) So I’m improving!

My name is Natalia Zavgorodnaya (hence the initials NZ in the name of my blog), I was born and live in the beautiful southern city of Russia – Krasnodar, the center of the fertile and fertile Kuban! I love my city very much, which from year to year only becomes more beautiful, brighter, more convenient, and I will not exchange it for any other city in the world!

I am 34 years old, and my main profession now is my mother)) I am married for the second time, I have two wonderful sons: the eldest, Yaroslav, is already 14, and the youngest, Mishana, will soon be 7 months old)) And, of course, now it is the youngest son who is the main center of my universe! It was his birth that gave inspiration and desire to sew toys for children, soft letters, various accessories for children’s rooms now, to delight babies and their mothers.

I am an economist by education, but I have never worked by profession. After graduation, by chance, I got into a consulting company and began to develop as a specialist in the assessment, training and development of personnel. I have the main place of work, from which I left on the long-awaited maternity leave, and now there is more and more desire and strength for creativity, for self-expression, for the development of my favorite business.

In addition to my hobby for sewing, I can knit, I try to create patterns for my dolls, letters, etc.etc., look for some new images for them. I admire the works of many puppeteers, which I will definitely tell you about in the future!

In the near future, in addition to sewing toys and letters for small children, there is also the creation of the first collection of miniature textile dolls for older girls, the image of these dolls has almost clearly been outlined in my soul, and which I myself have missed so much in my childhood))

And I am also a big fan of Michael Jackson’s creativity with 20 years of experience and deputy head of the Krasnodar fan club MJ in Krasnodar, but this is a separate story, which I will tell you sometime;)))

Let’s get to know you better? Please tell us a little about yourself, my readers! Write in the comments to this post where you live, what are your hobbies, what are your dreams? I will be happy to meet and make friends with new people!

90,000 Dostoevsky’s great-grandson named his ancestor’s favorite book


Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky was married twice. The first marriage turned out to be childless, but in the second, with a young stenographer Anna Grigorievna Snatkina, four children were born. However, two of them died in early childhood. The daughter, Lyubov Fedorovna, left the country even before the revolution and died in Italy at the age of 56 childless. The family was continued by the son – Fyodor Fedorovich. Since childhood, he was fond of horses and before the revolution managed to become a famous specialist in horse breeding, he died in 1922. He left two children – Fedor and Andrei, but Fedik, as he was called in the family, died at the age of 16 from typhoid fever.Dostoevsky’s only grandson became an engineer in the forestry industry. He had two children: Tatiana (1937) and Dmitry (1945). Tatiana never gave birth, but Dmitry Dostoevsky, owner of 21 professions, has a son – Alexei (1975). The correspondent of “MK” also met with him.

“I am interested in the music of the language”

– Is it true that you are a driver?

– Yes, I drove a tram in St. Petersburg.

– Are you somehow connected with the literary sphere?

– By education I am a philologist, teacher.I ended up in an English special school during the Soviet era. I got interested in languages ​​there, especially English and German. I graduated from school at the border time – in 1990. The base, which they gave me in the special school, was enough for admission to the Herzen language university (RSPU named after A.I. Herzen is one of the oldest and largest language universities in Russia. – MM ). A good place. It was interesting for me to study phonetics – the music of the language. In general, I am a musician with no musical education. But my passion for music has to do with language.

– Does the music feed?

– Music is part of life, but no, it doesn’t feed. Here is the same line as in writing: you can live from this if you combine a certain conjuncture. Without biting off your conscience, make easy compromises with yourself. But this is not about me.

– What is your music? What genre do you play?

– Art folk, rock, psychedelic art rock. I play bass and double bass. My youth came in the early 1990s. There were dashing times.I remember how in October 1993 in Moscow I was drinking in the hostel of the conservatory, when the tanks went to the embankment, and the hostel was just on the other side of the embankment … But that’s another story. In general, then I quickly realized that teaching is not mine. To be honest, I didn’t want to be a teacher from the very beginning. I learned the language and retreated. First, he went on academic leave, then recovered, then transferred to a correspondence course in another language university. I went to work. My father was a train driver, and I became. And then he ended up in a monastery.He was a musher there – a mare driver.

Portrait of Dostoevsky by Vasily Perov.

– How did it happen?

– The first Chechen war was in full swing, when I was finally expelled from the institute, in 1995. And at that time I already had a military training specialty – a car driver. My friend, a neighbor in the stairwell, left for Chechnya, and a week later he was returned in a zinc coffin.His entire column was burned. With such a military training specialty as mine, it’s clear: the first bullet is mine. The recruits are put in the head and tail, because what is the use of them? .. Then our family friend, priest, Father Gennady Belovolov (rector of the Church of St. John the Theologian, cleric of the St. Kronstadt. – MM .) Proposed to submit a petition to the governor of the Valaam monastery to join the fraternity.At that time, the Ministry of Defense had agreements with two monasteries – Optina Hermitage and Valaam. And there, and there are military units nearby. According to the agreement, the inhabitants of the monastery undergo training on a general basis, and then serve in the unit at the monastery. I chose Balaam. I wrote a petition to the abbot in order to serve there. I spent two years in the brethren in the obedience of the groom. There was a wonderful stable there. And then I ran away from the brethren …

– Why?

– I returned to the bride who was waiting for me in St. Petersburg.And he entered the tram. In general, I was born opposite the 8th tram park of the Kirovsky district. The life of the park has accompanied me since childhood, I watched it from the window. And so until 2003, I drove a tram in the center of St. Petersburg. And then it turned out that there was not a single route on which I worked. Removed. But I found the most blessed time – Governor Vladimir Yakovlev, who loved trams. Under him, tram traffic was resumed along Inzhenernaya Street between Sadovaya and Liteiny, where the Ciniselli Circus is.Yakovlev personally opened this movement, and five or six carriage drivers were called to the opening. I was one of them. The Governor gave each of us a wristwatch. I wore mine for a while …

“I feel his blood in me”

– Is it difficult to be Dostoevsky in general?

– I will ask you in return: is it difficult to be a responsible person? This is the responsibility with which you were born, not the one that you can choose or not choose. That’s all.

– When did you read the first work of Fyodor Mikhailovich? And which one?

– I owe the first piece to chance.In Romanov Lane lives the director Yuri Valentinovich Grigoriev, who in 1989 began filming the film “Boys” based on “The Brothers Karamazov”. We selected actors, worked in funds on materials, visited the St. Petersburg Museum and came across my photograph. They asked the museum staff about me, thinking to try for the role: “Who is this?” They are told: “And this is Lesha Dostoevsky.” They: “Oh, how interesting!” As a result, I came to Moscow to the Gorky film studio. I was filmed at the audition – I approached the role. This was the beginning of my acquaintance with Dostoevsky.

Photo: From personal archive

– How old were you?

– 13 years old.

– A sharp plunge into Dostoevsky – headlong …

– It helped a lot to understand everything. Before that I had not read Dostoevsky, after all, the age was still romantic. Nobody forced at home. I was not raped at all in terms of reading. Only recommendations, but no pressure. It is important to slip the book in correctly and on time.The parents understood that they could think one thing, and the offspring – another. Then – once and in the course of movement it turns out that something accidentally clings. You start to swallow the bait.

– Then, as a teenager, did Dostoevsky delay?

– It was delayed later, when I understood myself a little. Of course, all your life you understand yourself. We all grow somewhere, up or down. The following case helped me to discover Dostoevsky.

– What is Fyodor Mikhailovich’s favorite work, the closest one?

– I will name two: “Stepanchikovo village and its inhabitants” and “Idiot”.“Selo Stepanchikovo” would recommend giving at school.

– Does your philosophy coincide with that of a famous ancestor?

– Each person is the Universe. The universe is unique. In some ways it is the same, in some it is not. We are surrounded by different circumstances, different times, different people. Something remains all-human. Something changes on the fly, like the language, its norms, usus … Yes and no, it’s a difficult question.

– What is not the same in the worldview?

– As a writer, I accept him completely and unconditionally.Not by blood, but as it is. But I feel his blood in me – in many ways, his passion was transmitted to me. I see how it was passed down by generations – from the history of my family, which in the twentieth century was pretty battered. You have to work with this.

– How worn?

– A lot of things happened. Everything happened the same as with our country. Andrei Andreevich, Anna Grigorievna’s executor (the second wife of FM Dostoevsky – MM ), fell under the “academic case”, but most of the academicians suffered for the cause.The state had to fight for itself. Counter-revolutionary activity is an article, now they are imprisoned for this, why then could they not? Now they are imprisoned for less. Andrei Andreevich was released, sorted out. It was wartime. In principle, then there was a colossal change in attitude. Rejection of the old society, the transition to war communism, the dictatorship of the proletariat. This is a long period – everything changed not in December 1917, but from 1905 to 1926-1927. Here it is – the revolution.

– Then before 1932, when they began to “tighten the nuts” …

– Perhaps.What should have degenerated has degenerated.

The monument on Vladimirskaya Square in St. Petersburg is the most successful, according to the descendant.


“Literature is lifeless”

– Are there many Raskolnikovs today?

– They were, are and will be. We live in a complex world, it has always been that way. If before you were with the state, like Christ in the bosom, now there is some convention.So now “watch yourself, be careful”, as in Tsoi’s song.

– What reflection of Dostoevsky’s image in modern culture do you consider the most successful? A monument for example? There is a Dostoevsky pizza in St. Petersburg. Does it annoy you when an ancestor’s name is used like that?

– Not that annoying. I grieve for these people. Bad marketing ploy. And the monument I like most of all is the St. Petersburg one – the one on Vladimirskaya Square. It is the easiest to execute and, probably, the most appropriate.

– What is the most appropriate reflection in the literature of the XX-XXI centuries?

– I’m not ready to judge this. What for? That which was born to live will survive, that which should degenerate will degenerate and be forgotten. Perverts do not have children, they degenerate. Literature can also be lifeless.

– And yet, do you think there is a lot of “Dostoyevshchina” in modern literature?

– I don’t know her. I find it difficult to cope with the flow of information that is around.I still have a Pentium-100 with a limited hertzovka inside. I can do a certain number of operations and prefer to do them responsibly and for myself. It’s easier for me to weed out unnecessary information, analyze and leave what is really needed. It is difficult to keep track of everything, including modern literature.

– What are you reading?

– The more you read, the more you realize that you have grasped only a fraction of what has already been written. We are hardly familiar with our classical literature, hardly appreciated it properly.I have now rediscovered Fet and Tyutchev for myself. We kind of teach it at school. But what does the 15-year-old have on his mind – Fet and Tyutchev? Unlikely. They paint you like a picture, and then you live already painted and either correspond to this picture or not. Your own perception is one thing, when you have already grown up, formed and read everything in a different way. Education teaches how to search, expand and analyze information. A schoolboy is like a chick, sitting at a desk, and they put it in his mouth; and the student is already an independent being.There must be a thirst for something – knowledge, pleasure …

– Do you have a reference book?

– Yes, but this is not Dostoevsky.

– Bible?

– No. Although I would like to. But the Gospel is such a high flight that no … Vadim Shefner is our St. Petersburg poet and writer. His book “War, Sister, Sorrow” is one of my handbooks.


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