Gwenna by Vicky Adin

Amid the bustling vibrancy of Auckland’s Karangahape Road, Gwenna Price’s passion is making sweets. Her pa had great plans for the family confectionery business when they emigrated from the valleys of Wales looking for a new life, but he died all too soon. Gwenna promised she would bring his dreams to life instead – and she would, if it wasn’t for her domineering stepbrother, Elias. With him in charge, it would be a matter of time before the business collapsed.

Falling in love with the cheeky and charming Johnno opens up other opportunities, but every step of the way Gwenna is thwarted. If not by Elias, then by Johnno’s father and the restraints of a society with strict Victorian values, but Gwenna is irrepressible. Nothing will stand in her way.

Throughout the twists and turns of love and tragedy, Gwenna is a young woman with uncommon courage, determination and ambition in an era when women were expected to stay at home. There are people who love her and those who are willing to help her achieve her goal but, blind to anything that distracts her from creating her legacy, Gwenna risks losing the one thing that matters to her the most.

“Inspired by a true story from the author’s homeland, Gwenna is a fascinating insight into life in Auckland at the turn of the 20th century.”

Buy Now RRP $33

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Castle in the Sky by Stacey Broadbent

Illustrated by Eli Broadbent

A sandpit, a shovel, and a little boy’s imagination.

Morning has broken, and it’s time to play!

A sandpit, a shovel and my bucket!

Where will my imagination take me today?

This book is aimed at children aged 4-6 years.

Buy Now RRP $10

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A Distant Belonging by Tony Chapelle

What does it mean to belong? In New Zealand in the 1950s and 1960s, Jamie Ashcott is one of those descendants of early British settlers who have little interest in their origins. He knows who he is and where he belongs. Or does he? IN Fiji, in the same decades, Tela Gilbard feels little attachment to the country of her birth. Two children of the Pacific whose lives become entwined in unpredictable ways.

Complete in itself, it is also a sequel to Merely a Girl and  The Youngest Son.

Buy Now RRP $35

 

Pages: 314
Dimensions: 150mm x 230mm

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The Youngest Son by Tony Chapelle

Tom Gerold served as a junior officer in the Crimea but lost his commission as a result of his fondness for drink and amatory adventure. Adding to his problems is his youngest son status, which means he is unable to share in the family’s estates in Wales. Resentful, but deeply proud of his heritage, he struggles to find a place for himself – and a suitable woman to help him in his quest.

This is a companion novel to Merely a Girl.

Buy Now RRP $35

 

Pages: 270
Dimensions: 153mm x 220mm

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Merely a Girl by Tony Chapelle

Merely a Girl is the story of Addie – Adelaide Augusta Gilbard – and how she comes to settle in New Zealand in 1860. The book opens in 1863 with the first entry from a diary that Addie has decided to keep. In it, she reflects on the people she had known she would miss when she and her new husband left England, and other things that, to her surprise, she has come to miss as well. The physical – geographical – differences between early New Zealand and the rural England that she has left behind are highlighted too in a way that draws a sharp contrast between the old world and the new.

From this opening chapter Chapelle takes us back to 1858 and introduces us to the family members, friends and acquaintances, and at least one villain, who people Addie’s world as she finishes school and reaches her eighteenth birthday.

Like an artist, Chapelle paints a subtle portrait of genteel rural society in the mid-1800s. Addie is the central figure in this circle of characters – not only because she is the girl in the book’s title, but also because her late and doting father told her so. He inspired her to believe in herself and to know that she was special, and could achieve anything, and she is surrounded by admiration and affection. However, her father omitted to warn her that all is not always as it seems, including the fact that having mixed race ancestry – being not entirely English – is still very much frowned on.

As Addie’s story unfolds from 1858 until her marriage two years later, Chapelle gives his readers many opportunities to reflect on the lot of women at that time and on how our approach to various social issues has evolved in the intervening years.

By the time Addie meets her husband-to-be, gets engaged and married, in the final quarter of the book, Chapelle has covered such points as racism, anorexia, unrequited love, schoolgirl crushes at boarding school, the role of the clergy, gambling, abuse of the disabled and illegitimacy.

Merely a Girl ends with another excerpt from Addie’s diary, dated July 1863, describing her earliest experiences of life in the colonies, and expressing her wish for future readers to have a true picture of who she, Adelaide Augusta Gilbard, was. In leading up to these closing pages, Chapelle has certainly fulfilled Addie’s wish. In doing so, he has presented his readers with a vivid overview of what those ancestors of ours who came to New Zealand 150-odd years ago had left behind, and what personal baggage they brought with them.

Buy Now RRP $35

 

 

Pages: 334
Dimensions: 153mm x 220mm

 

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The Contest by Carne Maxwell

Martin Fallaway is dying. With no family to whom he can leave his surplus fortune, he holds a contest on his tropical island, where ten families compete to be the last team left in order to claim the prize of thirty million dollars.

Arriving on the island, the contestants’ need for shelter is paramount, but the warm, sunny days, powder-white sand and crystal clear waters cloak their perspectives. When a storm hits, causing the first departure, the remaining contestants realize their time on the island might not be as idyllic as they first thought.

As the days tick slowly by, hidden dangers begin to manifest themselves; insecurities creep in, personalities change, inquisitive minds take over and secrets become lies. Reckless decisions made change their lives forever and when the unthinkable happens and their very existence is threatened, the island becomes their darkest nightmare.

With time running out and the remaining contestants’ trust in one another challenged, can they bury their consciences and risk everything, or will the emotional sacrifice be too great?

Buy Now RRP $30

Size: (h x w in mm) 145 x 204
No of pages: 385

 

 

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Chasing Rainbows by Rebekah Burgess

Poetry is more than wrangled and arranged words; poetry is an emotive and restorative experience.

This image-laden chapbook relays experiences that are honest, perceptive, revealing – in places raw, but always emotionally real.

This is Rebekah Burgess’ first poetry book,

Buy Now RRP $17

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