Friday 8 October 2021


Inside the Suitcase by Clotilde Perrin            $33
Another wonderfully inventive lift-the-flap book from the creator of Inside the Villains and The House of Madam M. Once upon a time, in a little house behind the hills, a boy packs his suitcase for a long journey. Lift the flaps to see what he takes, and travel with him over oceans and mountains, under water and into the forest. With every step on this voyage of obstacles, the boy faces a decision that will lead to a new adventure and help him get home. Delve deeper into each page and always remember what's in the suitcase.
>>Peek inside the suitcase
The History of a Riot by Jared Davidson            $15
"Nelson in 1843 was a violent place." In 1843 the New Zealand Company settlement of Nelson was rocked by the revolt of its immigrant labourers. Over 70 gang-men and their wives collectively resisted their poor working conditions through petitions, strikes and, ultimately, violence. Yet this pivotal struggle went on to be obscured by stories of pioneering men and women 'made good'. The History of a Riot uncovers those at the heart of the revolt for the first time. Who were they? Where were they from? And how did their experience of protest before arriving in Nelson influence their struggle? By putting violence and class conflict at the centre, this fascinating microhistory upends the familiar image of colonial New Zealand.
Three Novels by Yuri Herrera (translated by Lisa Dillman)           $48
Herrera's powerful trilogy Kingdom Cons, The Transmigration of Bodies and  Signs Preceding the End of the World gives a contemporary Mexico of drug lords, violence and illegal emigration to the US an almost mythological depth. Beautifully written, and now in this lovely hardback edition. 
The Lobster's Tale by Chris Price and Bruce Foster        $45
"What's the lobster's tune when he is boiling?" Exploring the lobster's biology and its history in language, literature and gastronomy, The Lobster's Tale navigates the perils of a life driven by overreaching ambition and the appetite for knowledge, conquest and commerce. In conversation with Chris Price's text, Bruce Foster's photographs navigate a parallel course of shadows and light, in which the extraordinary textures and colours of the natural world tell a darker story. The Lobster's Tale is a meditation on the quest for immortality on which both artists and scientists have embarked, and the unhappy consequences of the attempt to both conquer nature and create masterpieces. Meanwhile, below the waterline of text and images, a modest voice can be overheard whispering an alternative to these narratives of heroic and doomed exploration.
>>Look inside the book
>>10 questions for Foster and Price.
>>Other books in the Kōrero series: High Wire by Lloyd Jones and Euan Macleod; Shining Land: Looking for Robin Hyde by Paula Morris and Haru Sameshima.
The Faces by Tove Ditlevsen (translated by Tiina Nunnally)         $24
Lise, a children's book writer and married mother of three, is becoming increasingly haunted by disembodied faces and taunting voices. Convinced that her housekeeper and husband are plotting against her, she descends into a terrifying world of sickness, pills and institutionalisation. But is sanity in fact a kind of sickness? And might mental illness itself lead to enlightenment? A brief and powerful novel from this outstanding Danish writer. 
"The fact that Ditlevsen was herself one of insanity's intimates does much to explain this book's harrowing authenticity. But The Faces - in Tiina Nunnally's very deliberate, close-to-the-nerve translation - rises above a case study because, working from the inside, Ditlevsen is able to explore the surprising contours of Lise's experience: from her point of view, madness can be funny, soft and secure, and far more enlightening than the 'reality' it struggles to evade." —The New York Times
On Love and Tyranny: The life and politics of Hannah Arendt by Ann Heberlein            $45
Hannah Arendt dedicated her life to thinking through the most fundamental and difficult of human problems: totalitarianism, exile, the nature of love and the moral problem of evil. But these were not only philosophical concerns for Arendt — they were also personal. 
Gentle and Fierce by Vanessa Berry            $33
Having spent her life in city environments, Vanessa Berry’s experiences with animals have largely been through encounters with urban creatures, representations of animals in art and the media, and as decorative ornaments or kitsch. The essays suggest that these mediated encounters, rather than being mundane or removed from nature, provide meaningful connections with the animal world, at a time in which it is threatened by climate change and environmental destruction.
The Dry Heart by Natalia Ginzburg (translated by Frances Frenaye)           $23
The Dry Heart begins and ends with the matter-of-fact pronouncement: "I shot him between the eyes." As the tale — a plunge into the chilly waters of loneliness, desperation, and revenge — proceeds, the narrator's murder of her flighty husband takes on a certain logical inevitability. Stripped of any preciousness or sentimentality, Natalia Ginzburg's writing here is white-hot, tempered by rage. She transforms the unhappy tale of an ordinary dull marriage into a rich psychological thriller that seems to beg the question: why don't more wives kill their husbands?
English Magic by Uschi Gatward            $38
Short stories set in an England simultaneously domestic and wild, familiar and strange, real and imagined. The stories couple the past and the present, merging the surreal and the mundane.
>>'The Clinic'.
>>'Oh Whistle and'
Hyphen by Pardis Mahdavi         $24
To hyphenate or not to hyphenate has been a central point of controversy since before the invention of printing. And yet, the hyphen has persisted, bringing and bridging new words and concepts. This book follows the story of the hyphen from antiquity—the word Hyphen is derived from an ancient Greek word meaning 'to tie together'—to the present, but also uncovers the politics of the hyphen and the role it plays in creating identities. The journey of this humble piece of connective punctuation reveals the quiet power of an orthographic concept to speak to the travails of hyphenated individuals all over the world. Hyphen is ultimately a compelling story about the powerful ways that language and identity intertwine. Mahdavi—herself a hyphenated Iranian-American—weaves in her own experiences struggling to find a sense of self amidst feelings of betwixt and between. Through stories of the author and three other individuals, Hyphen collectively considers how to navigate, articulate, and empower new identities.
>>New-York's hyphenated history. 
Build Your House Around My Body by Violet Kupersmith          $33
1986: The teenage daughter of a wealthy Vietnamese family gets lost in an abandoned rubber plantation while fleeing her angry father, and is forever changed by the experience. 2011: Twenty-five years later, a young, unhappy American named Winnie disappears from her new home in Saigon without a trace. The fates of these two women are inescapably linked, bound together by past generations, by ghosts and ancestors, by the history of possessed bodies and possessed lands.
"Hugely impressive." —Guardian
>>Read an excerpt

Clean Living Under Difficult Circumstances: Finding a home in the ruins of Modernism by Owen Hatherley          $43
From the grandiose histories of monumental state building projects to the minutiae of street signs and corner cafés, from the rebuilding of capital cities to the provision of the humble public toilet, Clean Living Under Difficult Circumstances argues for the city as a socialist project. This essay collection spans a period from immediately before the 2008 financial crash to the year of the pandemic. Against the business-as-usual responses to both crises, Owen Hatherley outlines a vision of the city as both a venue for political debate and dispute as well as a space of everyday experience, one that we shape as much as it shapes us. Incorporated here are the genres of memoir, history, music and film criticism, as well as portraits of figures who have inspired new ways of looking at cities, such as the architect Zaha Hadid, the activist and urbanist Jane Jacobs, and thinkers such as Mark Fisher and Adam Curtis. Throughout these pieces, Hatherley argues that the only way out of our difficult circumstances is to imagine and try to construct a better modernity.
>>Refreshing ways to talk about buildings
The Sun is a Star: A voyage through the universe with Dick Frizzell           $45
Dick Frizzell fills his spaceship with his artist friends (including John Pule, Greg O'Brien, John Reynolds, Judy Darragh, Reuben Patterson, Grahame Sydney, Karl Maughan, Ani O'Neill, Reg Mombassa and Wayne Youle) and sets off into Space to explain the wonders of the universe. 
The Suitcase: Six attempts to cross a border by Frances Stonor Saunders           $48
Ten years ago, Frances Stonor Saunders was handed an old suitcase filled with her father's papers. 'If you open that suitcase you'll never close it again,' warned her mother. Her father's life had been a study in borders - exiled from Romania during the war, to Turkey then Egypt and eventually Britain, and ultimately to the borderless territory of Alzheimer's. The unopened suitcase seems to represent everything that had made her father unknowable to her in life. Now she finds herself with the dilemma of two competing urges: wanting to know what's in the suitcase, and wanting not to know. So begins this captivating exploration of history, memory and geography, as Frances Stonor Saunders unpicks her father's and his family's past. Is it possible to bring her father back, to summon once more someone who was distant and elusive when alive? The past is always the history of loss, of black holes, of things gone missing. 
Making Nice by Ferdinand Mount           $33
Mount's stinging satire plunges into the dubious world of London PR firms, the back rooms of Westminster and the campaign trail in Africa and America. We follow the hapless Dickie Pentecost, redundant diplomatic correspondent for a foundering national newspaper, together with his stern oncologist wife Jane, and their daughters Flo, an aspiring ballerina, and the quizzical teenager Lucy. The whole family find themselves entangled in an ever more alarming series of events revolving around the elusive Ethel (full name Ethelbert), dynamic founder of the soaring public relations agency Making Nice.
Paint Your Town Red: How Preston took back control and your town can too by Matthew Brown and Rhian E. Jones           $30
Preston City Council's efforts to generate and democratise wealth at a local level have earned Preston the title of Most Improved City. 
Pony by R.J. Palacio         $30
The highly anticipated and entirely fulfilling new story from the author of Wonder. When Silas Bird wakes in the dead of night, he watches powerlessly as three strangers take his father away. Silas is left shaken, scared and alone, except for the presence of his companion, Mittenwool (who happens to be a ghost). But then a mysterious pony shows up at his door, and Silas knows what he has to do. So begins a perilous journey to find his father — a journey that will connect him with his past, his future, and the unknowable world around him. 

Resistance by Val McDermid and Kathryn Briggs        $40
150,000 people descend on a farm in the northeast of England for an open-air music festival. At first, a spot of rain seems to be the only thing dampening the fun — until a mystery bug appears. Before long, the illness is spreading at an electrifying speed and seems resistant to all antibiotics. Can journalist Zoe Meadows track the outbreak to its source, and will a cure be found before the disease becomes a pandemic? A thrilling graphic novel. 
AUP New Poets 8 featuring Lily Holloway, Tru Paraha and Modi Deng         $30
Three new and compelling voices. 

To what extent to our implements express our culinary habits, and to what extent do they enforce it? 250 tools show us that how we cook has changed over the centuries and around the world. 

The Big Book of Belonging by Yuval Zommer           $35
A celebration of all the ways that humans are connected to life on planet Earth. With children at the heart of every beautifully illustrated spread, this book draws parallels between the way humans, plants, and animals live and behave. We all breathe the same air and take warmth from the same sun, we grow, we adapt to the seasons, and we live together in family groups.

Invisible: New Zealand's history of excluding Kiwi-Indians by Jacqueline Leckie           $40
Despite the myth of benign race relations, New Zealand has experienced a very long history of underlying prejudice and racism. Little has been written about the experiences of Indian migrants, either historically or today, and most writing has focussed on celebration and integration. Invisible speaks of survival and the real impacts racism has on the lives of Indian New Zealanders. It uncovers a story of exclusion that has rendered Kiwi-Indians invisible in the historical narratives of the country.
12 Bytes: How we got here, Where we might go next by Jeanette Winterson            $35
In these twelve essays Winterson traces the history of the AI revolution. She talks to some of the boldest and most imaginative thinkers in the field and looks to religion, myth and literature to help us understand the radical changes to the way we live and love that are just around the corner. When we create non-human life-forms, will we do so in our image? Or will we accept the once-in-a-species opportunity to remake ourselves in their image? What do love, caring and attachment look like with a non-biological life form? And what happens to the gender binary? What will happen when our destiny is not contained by physical bodies, and our destination is not planet Earth? 
No-One Is Angry Today by Toon Tellegen and Marc Boutavant        $35
Ten thoughtful, philosophical, absurd tales about forest animals—from squirrel to scarab beetle—spending their days as friends do, with birthday parties, writing letters, visiting, dancing, or sometimes all alone. Each day brings emotions that are always worth exploring, although not always easy...

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