Amazing Books that will inspire you to visit New Zealand
The Penguin History Of New Zealand by Michael King
A very comprehensive and readable history of New Zealand. Carefully researched and written by one of New Zealand’s leading historians, this book is a must read for those looking to understand this beautiful country, the Maori culture prior and post to the arrival of Europeans, British colonization, transition to independence and the more contemporary history .
The Bone People by Keri Hulme
An unusual story about love, isolation and complex relationship between Maori and European cultures in New Zealand. The protagonist, Kerewin Holmes is a reclusive artist that lives in an isolated tower in remote South Island. She befriends a mute boy named Simon and his adoptive father Joe. As time goes on, Kerewin realizes that Joe is physically abusing his son, and she decides to get more involved in their family.
Come On Shore and We Will Kill and Eat You All: A New Zealand Story by Christina Thompson
Part memoir, part history in Come On Shore and We Will Kill and Eat You All, Christina Thompson tells the story of how she met and eventually married a Maori man, interweaving it with a history of New Zealand and cultural collision between Europeans and the Maori.
The Whale Rider by Witi Ihimaera
A beautifully written tale about a young Maori girl named Kahu, who is determined to prove her great-grandfather, the current leader of the Maori people of Whangara, that she is the right successor to his chieftaincy.
Pounamu Pounamu by Witi Ihimaera
First published in the 1970’s, Pounamu Pounamu is a collection of short stories set on the East Coast of New Zealand. The stories constitute a whole and focus on the challenges and the pressure many Maori face when leaving the traditional rural way of life and moving to the cities.
Do They Speak English Down There? by Susan C Tunney
An enjoyable and heartfelt memoir of an American family who decides to leave their home in San Diego behind and move to New Zealand.
In the Land of the Long White Cloud saga by Sarah Lark
A beautiful tale of love and hate, trust and betrayal Set against the backdrop of colonial nineteenth-century New Zealand, In the Land of the Long White Cloud tells a story two women from England who meet on a ship heading to Christchurch. Gwyneira, a daughter of an impoverished sheep farmer is engaged to the son of a wealthy baron; Helen, a governess is about to marry a farmer.
The Colour by Rose Tremain
A historical novel set in New Zealand during the Gold Rush, in the late 1800’s. The Colour tells a story of a newly wed English couple Joseph and Harriet Blackstone, who along with Joseph’s aging mother move to New Zealand in search for greater opportunity and prosperity.
Squashed Possums: Off the beaten track in New Zealand by Jonathan Tindale
A quirky and entertaining travel memoir by Jon Tindel about the time he spend in New Zealand. Using his former home, the lone caravan as a narrator, the book gives a very informative picture of New Zealand’s breathtaking wildlife, history and culture.