Friday, 27 October 2017
The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa $45
A fragmentary "factless autobiography" attributed by Pessoa largely to his semi-heteronym Bernardo Soares but left unedited and uncompleted (if such a project could be completed) at Pessoa's (and, by extension, Soares's) death. The book is a Modernist masterpiece of existential observation and self-observation, with musings on the scattershot distribution of meaning in everyday life.
>> "The weirdest autobiography ever."
>> "A writer in flight from his name."
>> On the destruction of the 'I'.
False River: Stories, essays, secret histories by Paula Morris $35
Fiction addresses itself to fact and fact addresses itself to fiction. These pieces range all over the place, occasionally observing themselves transforming from essay to fiction (or vice-versa), asking themselves, and us, what is the nature, or value, of truth?
The Little Library Cookbook by Kate Young $45
100 recipes for dishes mentioned in favourite books. Includes Marmalade (A Bear Called Paddington), Tunna Pannkakor (Pippi Longstocking), Crab & Avocado Salad (The Bell Jar), Stuffed Eggplant (Love in the Time of Cholera), Coconut Shortbread (The Essex Serpent), Madeleines (In Search of Lost Time), Figs & Custard (Dubliners), Chocolatl (Northern Lights) and Smoking Bishop (A Christmas Carol).
"A work of rare joy, and one as wholly irresistible as the food it so delightfully describes. It is a glorious work that nourishes the mind and spirit as much as the body, and I could not love it more." - Sarah Perry (author of The Essex Serpent)
>> Crytallised ginger to please Agatha Christie
Go Went Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck $33
"Jenny Erpenbeck's magnificent novel is about the 'central moral question of our time,' and among its many virtues is that it is not only alive to the suffering of people who are very different from us but alive to the false consolations of telling 'moving' stories about people who are very different from us. Erpenbeck writes about Richard, a retired German academic, whose privileged, orderly life is transformed by his growing involvement in the lives of a number of African refugees—utterly powerless, unaccommodated men, who have ended up, via the most arduous routes, in wealthy Germany. Erpenbeck uses a measured, lyrically austere prose, whose even tread barely betrays the considerable passion that drives it onward." — James Wood, New Yorker
"Profound, unsettling and subtle." - The Guardian
From the author of Visitation and The End of Days.
The Extravagant Stranger: A memoir by Daniel Roy Connelly $40
"These are glowing, moving prose poems of hallucinatory intensity. The wit and bracing honesty of the memories, from awkward to adulatory, take you through a powerfully personal journey (for the reader as much as the writer) in each poem and in the sequence overall. The sense of timing is exquisite. A masterclass in how to turn a scene, a moment, so that it catches the light just so in the final sentence. Connelly combines the autobiographical courage of Heaney and Hill with the symbolic technique and the reach and ambition of the French masters of the form and the effect is mesmerising." - Luke Kennard
Animals Among Us: The new science of anthrozoology by John Bradshaw $50
Why do humans keep and cherish some animals i their homes and yet regard others as a source of food or sport? Our relationship with animals tells us much about our own nature as a species and as individuals. A thoughtful and enjoyable book.
Stories: The collected short fiction and True Stories: The collected short non-fiction by Helen Garner $37 / $48
As it says. Nice dustwrappered hardbacks.
"Garner is scrupulous, painstaking, and detailed, with sharp eyes and ears. She is everywhere at once, watching and listening, a recording angel at life's secular apocalypses. Her unillusioned eye makes her clarity compulsive." - James Wood, New Yorker
Daemon Voices: Essays on storytelling by Philip Pullman $38
Interesting and enjoyable considerations of storymaking from the author of 'His Dark Materials', 'The Book of Dust', 'Sally Lockhart', &c.
>>>>> The hardback edition of La Belle Sauvage is now in stock.
The Book of Forgotten Authors by Christopher Fowler $40
99 literary sensations whose stars have set are re-elevated in this charming book.
1947: When now begins by Elisabeth Åsbrink $38
The world had to reboot itself after the Second World War, but what was to be saved, what could be rebuilt, and what was to be made entirely new? In the first few years of relocations, reinventions and redirections set in place many of the tropes that have defined the world since. In 1947, production began of the Kalashnikov, Christian Dior created the New Look, Simone de Beauvoir wrote The Second Sex, the first computer bug is discovered, the CIA is set up, Hassan Al-Banna drew up the plan that remains the goal of jihadists to this day, and a UN committee was given four months to find a solution to the problem of Palestine.
Talking to My Daughter About the Economy: A brief history of capitalism by Yanis Varoufakis $35
What is money and why does debt exist? Where do wealth and inequality come from? How come economics has the power to shape and destroy our lives? An excellent primer, using stories to explain and question the drivers of society.
""The reason Varoufakis seems to have captured the imaginations of so many is that his words about the European crisis speak universal truths about democracy, capitalism and social policy." - Guardian
The Librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe $30
14-year-old Dita is confined in the extermination camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau. The several thousand residents of camp BIIb are inexplicably allowed to keep their own clothing, their hair, and, most importantly, their children. Fredy Hirsch maintains a school in BIIb. In the classroom, Dita discovers something wonderful: a dangerous collection of eight smuggled books. She becomes the books' librarian. Based on a true story.
The Japanese Garden by Sophie Walker $110
A comprehensive exploration of the concepts behind eight centuries of development of specifically Japanese garden aesthetic. A beautifully produced book.
"The act of seeing, and the concentration of seeing, takes an effort. The gardens impose that effort on you if you want to see them. It's another way of ordering your vision, and it slows down your vision." - Richard Serra
>> See sample pages.
Clementine Loves Red by Krystyna Boglar $22
It's the end of the holidays for Mark, Annie and Pudding. They've spent the summer in a cottage on the edge of a forest in the countryside, but they haven't had any really exciting adventures to tell their classmates back at school... Until, on their final visit to see the Frog King of a nearby pond, they find a frightened young girl crying in the woods. The curiously named Macadamia tells them she has lost Clementine, and so the three children set out on a quest to find her. But they are not the only ones looking for Clementine, and a storm is approaching, bringing with it a night full of surprises.
The Well-Tempered City: What modern science, ancient civilisations, and human nature teach us about the future of urban life by Jonathan F.P. Rose $40
A properly functioning city should be able to address the environmental, economic, and social challenges of the twenty-first century.
>> It is all a matter of tuning.
Out of the Wreckage: A new politics for an age of crisis by George Monbiot $27
The neoliberal experiment has brought society and the environment to the brink of disaster (and for many, over the brink). But humans are characterised not as much by competitive individualism as by altruism and co-operation. How can these be built into a politics that addresses the crises the world currently faces?
Black Barn: Portrait of a place by Gregory O'Brien and Jenny Bornholdt, photographs by Brian Culy $85
Text and poetry by outstanding writers, atmospheric photography and memorable recipes from the Hawke's Bay vineyard/retreat/bistro known as Black Barn.
The Parthenon Enigma: A journey into legend by Joan Breton Connelly $35
Postulates the Parthenon as the focus of cult rituals focussed on human sacrifice and emphasising the difference of Classical civiclisations from the succeeding Western Christian centuries.
Samuel Pepys: Plague, Fire, Revolution edited by Margarette Lincoln $50
A portrait of the late Stuart age, lavishly illustrated with art and objects associated with Pepys and his diaries.
Why We Sleep: The new science of sleep and dreams by Matthew Walker $55
Sleep is one of the most important aspects of our life, health and longevity and yet it is increasingly neglected in twenty-first-century society, with devastating consequences: every major disease in the developed world - Alzheimer's, cancer, obesity, diabetes - has very strong causal links to deficient sleep. Until very recently, science had only cursory answers to the questions of why we sleep, what good it served, and why its absence is so damaging to our health. Can increasing the amount and quality of our sleep improve our lives?
Reminiscences of a Long Life by John Logan Campbell $90
An Auckland city father's won account of his life, from his birth in Edinburgh in 1817, and covering much of the civic development of Auckland, lavishly illustrated throughout with artworks from his collections.
Theatre of Dreams, Theatre of Play: Nō and Kyōgen in Japan by Khan Trinh et al $45
An impressive collection of masks, costumes, instruments, set paintings and objects provides an excellent introduction to the practices of Noh and Kyogen threatre and their importance in Japanese cultural history.
Drawn Out: A seriously funny memoir by Tom Scott $45
Scott is one of New Zealand's favourite and longest-serving political cartoonists, columnists and satirists. Find out about the many unsuspected facets of his life.
To Catch a King: Charles II's great escape by Charles Spencer $38
When his attempt to invade England as King of Scotland ended in defeat by the Republic's forces at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, Charles managed to elude capture (despite the difficulty in disguising such a recognisable man) for over six weeks and escape to exile in Europe.
The Song from Somewhere Else by A.F. Harrold, illustrated by Levi Pinfold $19
When Frank is rescued from bullies by the misfit Nick, she makes a friend whose possession of strange secrets leads Frank to discover there is more to life than she had thought.
"Extraordinary. As moving, strange and profound as Skellig." - Guardian
Birdmania: A remarkable passion for birds by Bernd Brunner $40
Looking at people who like looking at birds tells as much about people as about birds. Brunner has written an interesting history of an obsession.
"An exquisitely beautiful book. These stories about birds are ultimately reflections on the curious nature of humanity itself." - Helen Macdonald (H is for Hawk)
Vintage Menswear: A collection from the Vintage Showroom by Josh Sims, Douglas Gunn and Roy Luckett $35
Includes an excellent selection of rarely seen exemplars of veteran workwear. Lots of fresh style inspiration here.
A World of Three Zeroes: The new economics of zero poverty, zero unemployment and zero carbon emissions by Muhammad Yunus $38
In the decade since Yunus first began to articulate his ideas for a new model of economics, thousands of companies, nonprofits, and individual entrepreneurs around the world have embraced them. From Albania to Colombia, India to Germany, newly created businesses and enterprises are committed to reducing poverty, improving health care and education, cleaning up pollution, and serving other urgent human needs in ingenious, innovative ways. Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in alleviating poverty.
The Anna Karenina Fix: Life lessons from Russian literature by Viv Groskop $38
Can the Russian classics provide guidance on the personal conundrums of modern life? Possibly. Fun.
Explore! Aotearoa by Bronwen Wall $30
Kupe! Thomas Brunner! Freda du Faur! Kieran McKay! Kelly Tarlton! Other people!
Uncommon Type: Some stories by Tom Hanks $37
Actor Tom Hanks cherishes his collection of vintage typewriters so much that he has written seventeen stories, each featuring a vintage typewriter.
>> A love affair with vintage typewriters.
I.P.A: A legend in our time by Roger Protz $40
A very full history of and guide to the notable India Pale Ales of the world.
The Secret Life of Cows by Rosamund Young $23
An observant farmer, Young suggests that there is much we can learn from cattle.
"Delightful. It alters the way one looks at the world."- Alan Bennett