Ockham Residential

Filed under “Ockham New Zealand Book Awards”

2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards Finalists

Four of our best-known novelists – whose novels, appropriately for our times, explore what it means to tell the truth – are in the running for the country’s richest fiction writing prize with today’s Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalist announcement

The Cage by Lloyd Jones, This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman, All This By Chance by Vincent O’Sullivan, and The New Ships by Kate Duignan are shortlisted for the $53,000 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize.

“They stood out for their ability to explore personal memory and collective mediation of the truth in new and provocative ways that have a lasting impact on the reader,” says the Fiction category convenor of judges Sally Blundell.

Award-winning New York-based novelist Joseph O'Neill will assist the three New Zealand judges to select this year’s Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize winner. 

Today’s announcement includes two major new Awards’ sponsors. Mitochondrial science company MitoQ will sponsor the four Best First Book awards, and arts enthusiasts and philanthropists Mary and Peter Biggs will support the Poetry category.

MitoQ’s chief marketing officer John Marshall says that as one of New Zealand’s newest success stories, it is their pleasure to help emerging writers further enrich the country’s literature.

Peter Biggs says that with poetry undergoing a wonderful resurgence in our country over the last few years, it struck him as strange that the Award for Poetry was unsupported.

“We are thrilled to be involved and hope that the Award continues to recognise poetry’s – and the poet’s – vital role to, as Salman Rushdie says, shape the world and stop it from going to sleep.”

The finalists in the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry are Are Friends Electric? by Helen Heath; There's No Place Like the Internet in Springtime by Erik Kennedy; The Facts by Therese Lloyd and Poūkahangatus by Tayi Tibble.

“The poetry collections on this year’s shortlist are marked by a striking diversity of approaches to the lyric poem, but all show an ambitious and engaging interest in experimenting with narrative, form, structure and voice without sacrificing emotional resonance,” says this year’s Poetry category convenor of judges Bryan Walpert.

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction finalists are New York Times best-selling author and academic Joanne Drayton for Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love; lauded and much-loved writer Maurice Gee for Memory Pieces; debut author Chessie Henry for We Can Make A Life, and renowned editor and writer Anna Rogers for With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War.

“We were excited by the fresh and diverse perspectives, new voices, and generous writing reflected in the shortlist, as well as by the appeal and attractiveness of the books themselves,” says General Non-Fiction category convenor of judges Angela Wanhalla.

In the Illustrated Non-Fiction category, the four finalists are: Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand's Native Forests by conservationist and journalist Paul Bensemann; Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor edited by investigative artist and researcher Bronwyn Holloway-Smith; Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing by senior curator Sean Mallon with anthropologist Sébastien Galliot, and Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand by writer, publisher and environmentalist Geoff Norman.

Illustrated Non-Fiction category convenor Douglas Lloyd-Jenkins says the judges were thrilled with the quality and ambition of the short-listed books, all of which clearly stood out from the rest.

New Zealand Book Awards trustee Jenna Todd says the Ockham’s shortlist is clear evidence of the vitality of New Zealand literature.

“Not only does the shortlist feature some of our best known writers - those with long and illustrious careers - but it also includes newcomers writing out of deep passion and engagement. These 16 books deepen the public discourse on a range of issues and the particular genius of each of their writers lifts them to an emotional plane at which they reward and endure for their readers,” says Ms Todd.

ACORN FOUNDATION FICTION PRIZE

The New Ships

Victoria University Press

Kate Duignan

The New Ships moves deftly back and forth in time and place as Peter Collie, his life eroding after the loss of his wife, tries to make sense of the past and find a way forward. With ageing parents, a flailing relationship with his son, and a past tragedy, the strata of life and family are excavated and entwined with ideas of art and literature to produce an intriguing and elegantly written novel with a wide cast of memorable characters and not a word out of place.

The Cage

Penguin Random House

Lloyd Jones

Lloyd Jones has delivered a dark but clear-eyed parable of who and what we become when supposedly decent societies master the art of ‘othering’. The narrator’s intense specificity in detailing the two captive strangers’ processes and behaviours, without any seeming emotional context, allows the book to become quietly horrific, the banality of its evil played out as studious observation. It is a courageous book in its insistence upon not directly engaging with its seeming lack of humanity. But the cumulative effect is that its chilling images and their implications do just that.

This Mortal Boy

Vintage, Penguin Random House

Fiona Kidman

Spare, unsentimental and unforgettable, This Mortal Boy is a masterful recreation of the events leading up to the real-life hanging of “jukebox killer” Albert Lawrence (Paddy) Black at Mount Eden prison in 1955. With seemingly effortless proficiency, Kidman creates an intensely human and believable story as she positions Paddy, newly arrived from Ireland, within the moral panic of post-war New Zealand, the restless vulnerability of Auckland’s teen culture and the damning preconceptions of the legal profession, all leading to the appalling inevitability of his death.

All This by Chance

Victoria University Press

Vincent O’Sullivan

All This by Chance is a remarkably immersive three-generational family saga revealing the persistence of a wartime past on our personal histories and the undeniability of traumatic memory. In rich, often intense prose Vincent O’Sullivan weaves the dramatic tension of his story through time and place, from a German concentration camp and post-war London to Italy, Greece, Africa and New Zealand, all the while holding his characters to the unbreakable thread that binds them to the impossible demands of the Holocaust.

MARY AND PETER BIGGS AWARD FOR POETRY

Are Friends Electric?

Victoria University Press

Helen Heath

Helen Heath’s collection, by turns thoughtful and moving, asks how the material world, including technology, might mediate – or replace – human relationships. The experimental first half uses found poems to engage how artifacts – sex dolls, buildings – become objects of human passion. The elegiac second half offers a touching speculative narrative: a woman embeds her deceased partner’s personality into software to avoid letting go. The question Heath suggests is perhaps less whether friends are electric and more whether they can, or should be.

There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime

Victoria University Press

Erik Kennedy

Erik Kennedy’s frequently playful book offers intellectual and aesthetic surprises, not least of which in the way it moves beyond its ironic mode to at times vulnerable meditations on politics, family, relationships and the self. The collection is notable for experiments in structure and prosody, weaving the contemporary, per the collection’s title, with updated nods to received forms such as the sonnet and rhyme. Kennedy’s frequently light tonal touch belies the difficulty of the linguistic manoeuvres it deftly performs.

The Facts

Victoria University Press

Therese Lloyd

Therese Lloyd’s The Facts combines ekphrasis, literary influence and the personal poem. At times darkly humorous and at others intensely uncomfortable, these poems explore a contemporary approach to the confessional lyric, interrogating emotional experience while maintaining self-awareness and a willingness to look outwards. One engaging thread in the collection is its investigation of the role of art and spirituality in relation to individual trauma and the process of healing.

Poūkahangatus

Victoria University Press

Tayi Tibble

Tayi Tibble’s first collection brings us fresh, bold poems that saunter and shimmy with an unsettling self-assurance through a range of uncomfortable and familiar tropes. Her words are vital on the page: skewing and renewing the dusky maiden as millennial sex kitten. Her kūpenga snares scenes that an Aotearoa audience will recognise as our own awkward, unequal, power dynamic. Her lyrical kaupapa draws us in to peer at a two-way mirror that is playful, brutal, seductive and disquieting.

ILLUSTRATED NON-FICTION AWARD

Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand’s Native Forests

Potton & Burton

Paul Bensemann

In this powerful account of aspects of recent environmental history in Aotearoa New Zealand, the author brings together a wealth of first-hand accounts and stories to provide an important record of the individuals and groups who made commitments to forest conservation and activism. Historic illustrations and well-chosen archival materials create a sense of context for the reader, while the use of contemporary photography captures the splendour of the natural environment that the book so rightfully celebrates.

Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor

Massey University Press

Edited by Bronwyn Holloway-Smith

Thoughtfully designed and beautifully presented, the creators of this book about the murals made by artist E. Mervyn Taylor in the 1950s and 1960s have paid considerable attention to both content and production values and the result is impressive. The writers are diverse, the text engaging, and with the aid of well chosen illustrations the book delivers texture and context to a group of important and often overlooked public art works. It also makes a significant contribution to the broader understanding of artistic and cultural activity in mid-century New Zealand.

Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing

Te Papa Press

 

Sean Mallon and Sébastien Galliot

This striking book detailing 3000 years of Sāmoan tattooing immediately invites closer investigation as a result of its integrated approach to design, photography, typography and writing. The ambitious scope of the subject matter and the knowledge of the main authors results in an important body of new scholarship, while the texts remain clear, accessible and engaging. Invited writers add a range of perspectives and experiences appropriate to the subject and intention of the book.

Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand

Potton & Burton

Geoff Norman

This handsomely designed and elegant book offers an expanded history of the birds of Aotearoa New Zealand. The combination of text and illustrations creates a work that is detailed, wide-ranging and informative, illustrating the writer’s advanced understanding of his subject. Birdstories seamlessly brings iconic historical images together with the work of more recent artists and designers to create a volume that presents a real sense of how these birds became a feature of our visual, natural and cultural history, while reinforcing a strong conservation message.

ROYAL SOCIETY TE APĀRANGI AWARD FOR GENERAL NON-FICTION

Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love

Otago University Press

Joanne Drayton

This deeply moving and often surprising story is a delight to read. Set against the backdrop of the onscreen double-act many of us will remember, Hudson & Halls conveys the humour, enduring love and drama of this couple’s public and personal relationship. Joanne Drayton’s fresh approach to storytelling highlights significant social and political moments over four decades and three countries, while the story and the book design celebrate some of the kitsch flamboyance of the pair and the period.

Memory Pieces

Victoria University Press

Maurice Gee

A fresh and evocative take on the memoir from Maurice Gee, one of New Zealand’s favourite fiction writers. Three years after the publication of a comprehensive biography, he offers his own Memory Pieces, a compelling three-part memoir exploring his parents’ relationship, his own childhood, and his Swedish-born wife Margaretha’s childhood. This well-crafted and often riveting story is told with warmth and generosity, and presented in a beautifully produced book.

We Can Make a Life

Victoria University Press

Chessie Henry

Beautifully written and highly engaging, We Can Make a Life is the story of a remarkable family and their life in the South Island. Told with warmth and curiosity by an exciting new writer with a fresh and compelling voice, Chessie Henry’s powerful memoir explores her childhood, family dynamics, mental health, and the impact of the Christchurch and Kaikoura earthquakes on her family. The assuredness of the writing is complemented by the attractiveness of the book.

With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War

Massey University Press

Anna Rogers

In this exquisitely produced book, Anna Rogers introduces us to the little-known story of New Zealand’s medical services during the Great War. Ambitious in scope, and engagingly written, all dimensions of the medical effort are covered, as are the significant challenges the doctors, nurses, stretcher-bearers, ambulance drivers and pharmacists faced in treating the traumatic impacts of war on the bodies and minds of soldiers. A remarkable history told with skill, compassion and empathy.

Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2019 Longlist

The $50,000 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize for 2019 will be judged by novelist and literary festival programme director Rachael King; novelist, short story writer and lecturer James George (Ngāpuhi); and journalist, reviewer and editor Sally Blundell. They will be joined by a well-known international judge in deciding the ultimate winner from their shortlist of four.

The Poetry Award will be judged by three award-winning poets: creative writing teacher Airini Beautrais; Massey University Associate Professor Bryan Walpert; and Karlo Mila, Pasifika poet who runs an indigenous leadership programme.

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction will be judged by academic and award-winning science writer Rebecca Priestley; award-winning historian and academic Angela Wanhalla; and curator, educator and writer Karl Chitham (Ngāpuhi).

The Illustrated Non-Fiction Award will be judged by well-known writer and commentator Douglas Lloyd Jenkins; art curator and writer Lucy Hammonds; and long-time bookseller Bruce Caddy.

ACORN FOUNDATION FICTION PRIZE

The Man Who Would Not See - Rajorshi Chakraborti

The Life of De’Ath - Majella Cullinane

The New Ships - Kate Duignan

Caroline’s Bikini - Kirsty Gunn

Mazarine - Charlotte Grimshaw

The Cage - Lloyd Jones

The Ice Shelf - Anne Kennedy

This Mortal Boy - Fiona Kidman

The Imaginary Lives of James Pōneke - Tina Makereti

All This by Chance - Vincent O’Sullivan

POETRY AWARD

Edgeland and Other Poems - David Eggleton

The Farewell Tourist - Alison Glenny

Are Friends Electric? - Helen Heath

All of Us - Adrienne Jansen and Carina Gallegos

There’s No Place Like the Internet in Springtime - Erik Kennedy

The Facts - Therese Lloyd

Winter Eyes - Harry Ricketts

Walking to Jutland Street - Michael Steven

Poūkahangatus - Tayi Tibble

Aspiring Daybook: The Diary of Elsie Winslow - Annabel Wilson

ILLUSTRATED NON-FICTION AWARD

Fight for the Forests: The Pivotal Campaigns that Saved New Zealand’s Native Forests
- Paul Bensemann

Galleries of Maoriland: Artists, Collectors and the Māori World, 1880-1910 - Roger Blackley

The New Zealand Horse - Deborah Coddington and Jane Ussher

Wanted: The Search for the Modernist Murals of E. Mervyn Taylor - Edited by Bronwyn Holloway-Smith

Tatau: A History of Sāmoan Tattooing - Sean Mallon and Sébastian Galliot

Mataatua Wharenui: Te Whare i Hoki Mai - Hirini Mead, Layne Harvey, Pouroto Ngaropo and Te Onehou Phillis

Birdstories: A History of the Birds of New Zealand - Geoff Norman

Whatever it Takes: Pacific Films and John O’Shea 1948-2000 - John Reid

Down the Bay: A Natural and Cultural History of Abel Tasman National Park - Philip Simpson

Hillary’s Antarctica: Adventure, Exploration and Establishing Scott Base - Nigel Watson and Jane Ussher

ROYAL SOCIETY TE APĀRANGI AWARD FOR GENERAL NON-FICTION

Filming the Colonial Past: The New Zealand Wars on Screen - Annabel Cooper

Song for Rosaleen - Pip Desmond

Hudson & Halls: The Food of Love - Joanne Drayton

Memory Pieces - Maurice Gee

The Heart of Jesús Valentino - Emma Gilkison

We Can Make a Life - Chessie Henry

Swim: A Year of Swimming Outdoors in New Zealand - Annette Lees

The Vulgar Wasp: The Story of a Ruthless Invader and Ingenious Predator - Phil Lester

With Them Through Hell: New Zealand Medical Services in the First World War - Anna Rogers

Dear Oliver: Uncovering a Pākehā History - Peter Wells

Judges announced for 2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards

An experienced panel of 12 judges – including prize-winning writers and poets, as well as historians, academics, curators and one of the country’s most respected booksellers – will   select the best books published this year for the 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.

The Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize, which will bestow $53,000 on its 2019 winner, will be judged by programme director of WORD Christchurch Rachael King, whose novel The Sound of Butterflies won the Hubert Church Best First Book Award for Fiction in 2007; novelist, short story writer and lecturer James George (Ngāpuhi); and journalist, reviewer and editor Sally Blundell. They will be joined by a well-known international judge, whose identity will be revealed in March 2019, to decide the ultimate winner from their shortlist of four.

Finalists and the ultimate winner in the Poetry category will be selected by three acclaimed poets: creative writing teacher Airini Beautrais; Massey University Associate Professor Bryan Walpert; and Karlo Mila, who runs an indigenous leadership programme and whose collection Dream Fish Floating won the Jessie Mackay Best First Book Award for Poetry in 2015.

The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction will be judged by science writer Rebecca Priestley, Associate Professor at Victoria University of Wellington and recipient of the 2016 Prime Minister’s Science Communication Prize; award-winning historian and University of Otago academic Angela Wanhalla; and curator, educator and writer Karl Chitham (Ngāpuhi), director of Tauranga Art Gallery, Toi Tauranga.

Well-known writer, curator and commentator on all aspects of architecture, design and art Douglas Lloyd Jenkins, whose book At Home: A Century of New Zealand Design won the Montana Medal for Non-Fiction in 2005, is joined in judging the Illustrated Non-Fiction Award by writer and curator at Dunedin Public Art Gallery Lucy Hammonds; and experienced bookseller Bruce Caddy, recently retired from a retail career spanning more than 40 years in several of the country’s best bookshops.

Paula Morris, chair of the Ockhams sub-committee of governing body the New Zealand Book Awards Trust, highlights that many of the 2019 judges are writers – and previous award-winners – themselves. “All are part of our vibrant literary culture here in New Zealand, and bring expertise and insights, as well as a passion for reading, to the demands of judging a major prize.”

She also points to the fact that the number of books entered in the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards increases every year, requiring more time for reading and deliberation by the judges. “As a result, after consultation within the industry, we have moved the announcement of the 2019 longlist to late January,” says Morris.

The judges will make their longlist of up to 10 books per category known on 31 January 2019 and the 2019 shortlist of 16 books will be announced on 6 March.

The winners will be announced at an awards evening held as the first public event of the Auckland Writers Festival on Tuesday 14 May 2019.

The first round of submissions to the 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards closes on 10 September 2018. Titles published between 1 January 2018 and 31 August 2018 must be submitted no later than 5pm, on this date. Entries for titles published between 1 September 2018 and 31 December 2018 open on 11 September and close at 5pm on Wednesday 24 October 2018. Entries can be made via http://www.nzbookawards.nz/new-zealand-book-awards/form/

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are supported by Ockham Residential, Creative New Zealand, the Acorn Foundation, Book Tokens (NZ) Ltd, the Royal Society Te Apārangi and Auckland Writers Festival, and are administered by the Festival on behalf of the New Zealand Book Awards Trust.  

Book Awards Celebrate 50th Anniversary with Stellar Finalist Line-up

Announced today, the 2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalists join a literary hall of fame that dates back to 1968 and features New Zealand’s most famous and distinguished writers.

The finalist books were selected by four panels of three specialist judges and were drawn from 40 longlisted titles selected out of more than 150 entries.

New Zealand Book Awards Trust chair Nicola Legat says this year’s shortlist demonstrates the diversity, depth and skill of New Zealand writers.

“These books reflect who we are as people and how we are developing as a nation, demonstrating that the writer’s role is as important now as it was half a century ago. Like many of the books nominated in previous years’ awards, the cream of this year’s crop are destined to become classics.”

In the contest for the $50,000 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize, University of Canterbury Professor of English Patrick Evans’ novel Salt Picnic vies with debut writer Annaleese Jochems’ Baby, Wellington lawyer Brannavan Gnanalingam’s Sodden Downstream, and novelist and creative writing teacher Pip Adam’s The New Animals. “We have selected four novels that directly confront and ask questions of both the world and the reader,” says the category judging convenor Jenna Todd. “These authors are pushing at the edges of what is possible in fiction in a style that’s both engaging and brave.”

The finalists in the Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction category are renowned historian and anthropologist Dame Anne Salmond for Tears of Rangi: Experiments Across Worlds; journalist Diana Wichtel for her debut book Driving to Treblinka: A Long Search for a Lost Father; Massey University Professor of History Michael Belgrave for Dancing with the King: The Rise and Fall of the King Country 1864-1885, and cartoonist Tom Scott for his memoir Drawn Out.

General Non-Fiction category convenor Ella Henry says there was a high degree of unanimity among the judges about these four books. “One book made me laugh, one made me cry, one reminded me of New Zealand’s complex history, and the other gave me great hope about the future of our nation.”

Matariki Williams, convenor of the Illustrated Non-Fiction Award category judging panel, says that evocative language interwoven with a remarkable range of imagery gave the category’s finalists a lasting impact. They are: Tuai: A Traveller in Two Worlds by Alison Jones and Kuni Kaa Jenkins; Tōtara: A Natural and Cultural History by Philip Simpson; Gordon Walters: New Vision by Zara Stanhope (commissioning editor), Lucy Hammonds, Laurence Simmons and Julia Waite, and The Face of Nature: An Environmental History of the Otago Peninsula by Jonathan West.

“These books, each of which was multi-layered in approach and execution, showcased the rich social, cultural, material and environmental history that has shaped Aotearoa. They were not just beautiful to look at but they were also all a joy to read,” says Ms Williams.

Collections by four acclaimed established poets comprise this year’s Poetry Award shortlist. They are Anchor Stone by Tony Beyer, Night Horse by Elizabeth Smither, Rāwāhi by Briar Wood, and The Yield by Sue Wootton.

Poetry category convenor Robert Sullivan says it was an excellent year for poetry. These shortlisted books are thoughtful, luminous, both precisely and generously descriptive of emotion and intellect, delighting in the dance of language. These lyrical poets channel fine depths to lift up poems as lights,” says Mr Sullivan.

The 2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalist titles are:

 

Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize:

  • The New Animals by Pip Adam (Victoria University Press)
  • Salt Picnic by Patrick Evans (Victoria University Press)
  • Sodden Downstream by Brannavan Gnanalingam (Lawrence & Gibson)
  • Baby by Annaleese Jochems (Victoria University Press)

 

Poetry Award:

  • Anchor Stone by Tony Beyer (Cold Hub Press)
  • Night Horse by Elizabeth Smither (Auckland University Press)
  • Rāwāhi by Briar Wood (Anahera Press)
  • The Yield by Sue Wootton (Otago University Press)

 

Illustrated Non-Fiction Award:

  • Tuai: A Traveller in Two Worlds by Alison Jones and Kuni Kaa Jenkins (Bridget Williams Books)
  • Tōtara: A Natural and Cultural History by Philip Simpson (Auckland University Press)
  • Gordon Walters: New Vision by Zara Stanhope (commissioning editor), Lucy Hammonds, Laurence Simmons, Julia Waite (Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and Dunedin Public Art Gallery)
  • The Face of Nature: An Environmental History of the Otago Peninsula by Jonathan West (Otago University Press)

 

Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non Fiction:

  • Dancing with the King: The Rise and Fall of the King Country, 1864-1885 by Michael Belgrave (Auckland University Press)
  • Tears of Rangi: Experiments Across Worlds by Anne Salmond (Auckland University Press)
  • Drawn Out: A Seriously Funny Memoir by Tom Scott (Allen & Unwin NZ)
  • Driving to Treblinka: A Long Search for a Lost Father by Diana Wichtel (Awa Press)

 

The winners will be announced at a ceremony on May 15 2018, held as the first public event of the Auckland Writers Festival.

Find out more about the shortlisted titles here.

Ockham New Zealand Book Awards Longlist 2018

2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards Longlist Announced

Forty books traversing the cultural, historic, artistic and social landscape of Aotearoa New Zealand have made the longlist for the prestigious Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, announced today.

Ten books are longlisted in each of the four awards’ categories – fiction, general non-fiction, illustrated non-fiction and poetry.  Together, they offer riches from both literary luminaries and our rising stars.

New Zealand Book Awards Trust chair Nicola Legat says the Awards received a large number of entries again this year and the standard was extremely high across all categories. “Clearly New Zealand publishing, and indeed our literature, is in excellent health. What to read over summer? Look no further than these 40 fine books."

The 2018 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards longlisted titles are:

Fiction (The Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize):

  • The New Animals by Pip Adam (Victoria University Press)
  • The Beat of the Pendulum by Catherine Chidgey (Victoria University Press)
  • The Earth Cries Out by Bonnie Etherington (Vintage, Penguin Random House)
  • Salt Picnic by Patrick Evans (Victoria University Press)
  • Sodden Downstream by Brannavan Gnanalingam (Lawrence & Gibson)
  • Heloise by Mandy Hager (Penguin Random House)
  • Iceland by Dominic Hoey (Steele Roberts Aotearoa)
  • Baby by Annaleese Jochems (Victoria University Press)
  • Tess by Kirsten McDougall (Victoria University Press)
  • Five Strings by Apirana Taylor (Anahera Press)

 

General Non-Fiction (The Royal Society Te Apārangi Award):

  • Dancing with the King: The Rise and Fall of the King Country, 1864-1885 by Michael Belgrave (Auckland University Press)
  • Tāngata Ngāi Tahu: People of Ngāi Tahu edited by Helen Brown and Takerei Norton (Te Rūnanga Ngāi Tahu and Bridget Williams Books)
  • Fearless: The Extraordinary Untold Story of New Zealand’s Great War Airmen by Adam Claasen (Massey University Press)
  • Phoney Wars: New Zealand Society in the Second World War by Stevan Eldred-Grigg, with Hugh Eldred-Grigg (Otago University Press)
  • The 9th Floor: Conversations with Five New Zealand Prime Ministers by Guyon Espiner and Tim Watkin (Bridget Williams Books)
  • Cleansing the Colony: Transporting Convicts from New Zealand to Van Diemen’s Land by Kristyn Harman (Otago University Press)
  • Tears of Rangi: Experiments Across Worlds by Anne Salmond (Auckland University Press)
  • Drawn Out by Tom Scott (Allen & Unwin NZ)
  • Driving to Treblinka: A Long Search for a Lost Father by Diana Wichtel (Awa Press)
  • A Strange Beautiful Excitement: Katherine Mansfield’s Wellington 1888-1903 by Redmer Yska (Otago University Press)

 

Illustrated Non-Fiction:

  • New China Eyewitness: Roger Duff, Rewi Alley and the Art of Museum Diplomacy edited by James Beattie and Richard Bullen (Canterbury University Press)
  • Strangers Arrive: Emigrés and the Arts in New Zealand, 1930-1980 by Leonard Bell (Auckland University Press)
  • Good-bye Maoriland: The Songs and Sounds of New Zealand’s Great War by Chris Bourke (Auckland University Press)
  • Teenagers: The Rise of Youth Culture in New Zealand by Chris Brickell (Auckland University Press)
  • Tuai: A Traveller in Two Worlds by Alison Jones and Kuni Kaa Jenkins (Bridget Williams Books)
  • Ten x Ten: Art at Te Papa edited by Athol McCredie (Te Papa Press)
  • Undreamed of ... 50 years of the Frances Hodgkins Fellowship by Priscilla Pitts and Andrea Hotere (Otago University Press)
  • Tōtara: A Natural and Cultural History by Philip Simpson (Auckland University Press)
  • Gordon Walters: New Vision by Zara Stanhope (commissioning editor), Lucy Hammonds, Laurence Simmons, Julia Waite (Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki and Dunedin Public Art Gallery)
  • The Face of Nature: An Environmental History of the Otago Peninsula by Jonathan West (Otago University Press)

 

Poetry:

  • Flow: Whanganui River Poems by Airini Beautrais (Victoria University Press)
  • Anchor Stone by Tony Beyer (Cold Hub Press)
  • The Internet of Things by Kate Camp (Victoria University Press)
  • The Ones Who Keep Quiet by David Howard (Otago University Press)
  • Tightrope by Selina Tusitala Marsh (Auckland University Press)
  • Fully Clothed and So Forgetful by Hannah Mettner (Victoria University Press)
  • Night Horse by Elizabeth Smither (Auckland University Press)
  • What is Left Behind by Tom Weston (Steele Roberts Aotearoa)
  • Rāwāhi by Briar Wood (Anahera Press)
  • The Yield by Sue Wootton (Otago University Press)

 

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards shortlist will be announced on 6 March 2018. The winners (including of the four Best First Book Awards and a Māori Language Award, presented at the judges’ discretion) will be announced at a ceremony on May 15 2018, held as the first public event of the Auckland Writers Festival. 2018 will mark the 50th anniversary of the first book awards ceremony in New Zealand, presented in 1968 as the Wattie Book Awards.

To find out more about the longlisted click here.

Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2017 Winners Announced

Ockham Residential were delighted to join the NZ Book Awards and the Auckland Wrister’s Festival last night for the presentation of the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.  Congratulations to all the winners, shown below – we are delighted to have been a part of this fantastic celebration of New Zealand literature again in 2017.

For the second year, the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards took pride of place as the first public event of the Auckland Writers Festival.

Auckland Writers Festival director, Anne O’Brien, says she is delighted to launch the six-day Festival with the country’s premier book awards.

“Hosting the awards is a demonstration of our commitment to local writers, and as the largest showcase of New Zealand literature in the world, we are thrilled with the opportunity to do so. More than 100 of the nation’s best writers take part in the Festival’s more than 170 events, including tonight’s winners. I encourage everyone to come along, have some fun and be inspired by the wealth of this country’s writing talent,” says Ms O’Brien.

The Poetry, Illustrated Non-Fiction and General Non-Fiction category winners each took home a $10,000 prize.

This year’s four category award winners will appear at a free event at the Auckland Writers Festival: The State We’re In on Friday 19 May at 5.30pm in the Heartland Festival Room, Aotea Square.

The winners were: 

  • Catherine Chidgey won the Fiction Award for her novel, The Wish Child (Victoria University Press).
  • Andrew Johnston won the Poetry category for his collection Fits & Starts (Victoria University Press). 
  • Ashleigh Young (Wellington) took the Royal Society Te Apārangi Award for General Non-Fiction for her collection of personal essays Can You Tolerate This? (Victoria University Press).
  • Dunedin writer and historian Barbara Brookes won the Illustrated Non-Fiction category for her meticulously documented work A History of New Zealand Women (Bridget Williams Books).

Four authors won four Best First Book Awards at the event: 

  • The Judith Binney Best First Book Award for Illustrated Non-Fiction: Ngarino Ellis for A Whakapapa of Tradition: 100 Years of Ngāti Porou Carving, 1830-1930, with new photography by Natalie Robertson (Auckland University Press).
  • The Jessie Mackay Best First Book Award for Poetry: Hera Lindsay Bird for Hera Lindsay Bird (Victoria University Press).
  • The E.H. McCormick Best First Book Award for General Non-Fiction: Adam Dudding for My Father’s Island: A Memoir (Victoria University Press).
  • The Hubert Church Best First Book Award for Fiction: Gina Cole for Black Ice Matter (Huia Publishers).

Each Best First Book Award winner received $2,500.

 

@theockhams                   #theockhams

Shortlist Announced for the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2017

As proud sponsors of the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, Ockham Residential is delighted to present the 2017 shortlists.  With awards in Fiction, General Non Fiction, Illustrated Non Fiction and Poetry, the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are New Zealand’s pre-eminent literary awards, and the honours are hotly contested.  This year is no different, with exceptional talent in all four categories, and a mix of established & new writers that demonstrates the depth in New Zealand literature.

The short lists are: 

The winners (including of the four Best First Book awards) will be announced at a ceremony in the Aotea Centre on Tuesday May 16, 2017, held as the first public event of the Auckland Writers Festival. The awards ceremony is open to the public. Tickets to the event can be purchased via Ticketmaster once festival bookings open on Friday 17 March. 

To read more about the awards & the finalists, go to the New Zealand Book Awards trust website at:  

http://www.nzbookawards.nz/new-zealand-book-awards/news/

Shearer, farmer and former soldier wins premier book award

Last night we were delighted to attend the inaugural Ockham NZ Book Awards presentation ceremony – and what a fabulous night! The New Zealand Book Awards Trust in conjunction with the Auckland Writer’s Festival have done an amazing job in bringing back the NZ Book Awards, and we are delighted to be working with them to both honour the legacy and celebrate the great future of New Zealand literature. 

The format – having each of the short listed writers read from their work, followed by the presentation of the award – was entertaining, thought provoking and a rare treat.  Is there another event when you can hear sixteen of New Zealand’s best authors read from their own works within the same ninety minute period? 

Click here to read more about the award winners in each category – but in our world, literature was the winner on the day.

The Ockham Foundation is proud to support independent thought and imagination, and who does that better than writers? Thank you, the NZ Book Awards Trust and Auckland Writer’s Festival – we can’t wait to do it all again next year!

Ockham New Zealand Book Awards Finalists Announced

First time sponsor of the New Zealand Book Awards Ockham Residential's, co-founder Mark Todd says he and business partner and teacher Ben Preston believe education is vital in everyone's lives.

"That starts with reading and is something that continues throughout our lifetime. Having world class books written by New Zealanders enriches all our lives which is one of the reasons we decided to support the awards.  The list of finalists is impressive, and we are looking forward to the Ockham NZ Books Awards function in May, in conjunction with the Auckland Writer’s Festival."

Debut writer nominated for $50,000 prize

A Wellington writer’s first novel is a finalist in the country’s most prestigious book awards, rubbing shoulders with literary heavyweights, all contenders to win the new $50,000 Acorn Foundation Literary Award.

David Coventry, whose debut book The Invisible Mile, about a New Zealander who in 1928 rode with the first English-speaking Tour de France team, is one of four Fiction category finalists in the 2016 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, as are the distinguished novelist Patricia Grace (Chappy), Emeritus Professor Patrick Evans (The Back of His Head) and Stephen Daisley (Coming Rain).

The fiction titles are four of the 16 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalists announced today, after a year-long hiatus that sees the awards return with new sponsorship, increased prize money, and a winners’ ceremony open to the public as part of the Auckland Writers Festival.

The convenor of judges for the Fiction category, Jill Rawnsley, notes that the four finalist books are all historical novels. “All are masterful examples of storytelling, using multiple narrative points of view, conjuring up hugely memorable – if not always likeable - characters and vivid portrayals of hard physical and psychologically complex lives.”

The Poetry category’s convenor of judges, Elizabeth Caffin, says choosing a shortlist of four from the ten longlisted poetry collections seemed at first a breeze. “Extraordinarily, we all instantly agreed on three books: Roger Horrocks' The Ghost in the Machine, Tim Upperton’s The Night We Ate the Baby and David Eggleton’s The Conch Trumpet.

“Choosing the fourth finalist was difficult, given that the three remaining long-listed titles - by Leilani Tamu, Chris Tse and John Dennison - each showed a sophistication, a technical skill and an originality you would normally find in much more practised writers. We decided at last on Chris Tse’s debut collection How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes.”

“There are some threads linking the four General Non-Fiction category finalists,” says category convenor Simon Wilson. “They’re all by, or about, writers who are better known for fiction. For most of them the author has invented the manner of the storytelling, and done so with remarkable skill. They are also, each in its own way, pathfinders.

“A literary biography – Maurice Gee: Life and Work by Rachel Barrowman and a literary memoir – Māori Boy: A Memoir of Childhood by Witi Ihimaera - give us a pair of much-loved authors we may feel we have known all our lives, but we discover we have not known them like this. The cultural failure of the Christchurch rebuild told by Fiona Farrell in The Villa at the Edge of the Empire: One Hundred Ways to Read a City and the tragedy of the Holocaust in Lost and Gone Away by Lynn Jenner are visited with deeply affecting originality,” says Wilson.

The shortlisted titles in the Illustrated Non-fiction category would be standout books anywhere in the world,” says the category convenor Jane Connor. “Subjects that each reflect an aspect of our culture are treated with the depth and care they deserve, by authors, photographs and publishers alike. The research is impeccable, well-chosen images are beautifully integrated with strong and authoritative text, and design and production are of the highest standard.”

The 2016 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards finalists are:

Fiction

The Back of His Head by Patrick Evans (Victoria University Press)

Chappy by Patricia Grace (Penguin Random House)

Coming Rain by Stephen Daisley (Text Publishing)

The Invisible Mile by David Coventry (Victoria University Press)

 

Poetry

How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes by Chris Tse (Auckland University Press)

The Night We Ate the Baby by Tim Upperton (Haunui Press)

Song of the Ghost in the Machine by Roger Horrocks (Victoria University Press)

The Conch Trumpet by David Eggleton (Otago University Press)

 

General Non-Fiction

Maurice Gee: Life and Work by Rachel Barrowman (Victoria University Press)

The Villa at the Edge of the Empire: One Hundred Ways to Read a City by Fiona Farrell (Penguin Random House)

Māori Boy: A Memoir of Childhood by Witi Ihimaera (Penguin Random House)

Lost and Gone Away by Lynn Jenner (Auckland University Press)

 

Illustrated Non-Fiction

Te Ara Puoro: A Journey into the World of Māori Music by Richard Nunns (Potton and Burton)

New Zealand Photography Collected by Athol McCredie (Te Papa Press)

Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History by Atholl Anderson, Judith Binney, Aroha Harris (Bridget Williams Books)

Real Modern: Everyday New Zealand in the 1950s and 1960s by Bronwyn Labrum (Te Papa Press)

 

The Fiction category is judged by distinguished writer Owen Marshall CNZM, Wellington bookseller and reviewer Tilly Lloyd, and former Director of the Auckland Writers Festival and former Creative New Zealand senior literature adviser Jill Rawnsley.

The Poetry Prize is judged by former Auckland University Press publisher Elizabeth Caffin MNZM, Dr Paul Millar, of the University of Canterbury, and poet and University of Auckland academic Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh.

The General Non-Fiction Prize is judged by Metro Editor-At-Large Simon Wilson, Professor Lydia Wevers, literary historian, critic and director of the Stout Research Centre at Victoria University of Wellington, and Dr Jarrod Gilbert, a former Book Awards winner for Patched: A History of Gangs in New Zealand, of the University of Canterbury.

The Illustrated Non-Fiction Prize is judged by former publisher Jane Connor, publisher of the magisterial The Trees of New Zealand, which won the Book of the Year award in 2012, Associate Professor Linda Tyler, Director of the Centre for Art Studies at The University of Auckland, and Leonie Hayden, the editor of Mana magazine.

The winners (including of the four Best First Book Awards) will be announced at a ceremony on Tuesday May 10 2016, held as the opening night event of the Auckland Writers Festival. The awards ceremony is open to the public for the first time. Tickets to the event can be purchased via Ticketmaster once festival bookings open on Friday 18 March.

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards are supported by the Ockham Foundation, the Acorn Foundation, Creative New Zealand and Book Tokens Ltd.

ENDS

For interview opportunities, author images, book cover images and further information please contact: Penny Hartill, director, hPR 09 445 7525, 021 721 424,

 

Editor’s Notes:

The New Zealand Book Awards are the country’s premier literary honours for works written by New Zealanders. First established in 1968 as the Wattie Book Awards (later the Goodman Fielder Wattie Book Awards), they have also been known as the Montana New Zealand Book Awards and the New Zealand Post Book Awards. The honours, now given for Fiction, Illustrated Non-fiction, General Non-Fiction and Poetry, as well as for Best First Book, are governed by the New Zealand Book Awards Trust (a registered charity).

Ockham Residential Limited is Auckland’s most progressive developer, founded in 2009 by Mark Todd and Ben Preston. They describe themselves as urban regenerators, who love Auckland, and who want to see Auckland’s urban built environment become as beautiful and as world class as its natural landscape. Their Ockham Foundation is a generous donor to schools and universities.

The Auckland Writers Festival is the largest literary event in New Zealand and the largest presenter of New Zealand literature in the world. Now in its 15th year, it hosts more than 150 writers from New Zealand and abroad over six days. Festival attendance increased 17 percent in 2015, to more than 62,000, following a 55 percent increase in 2014.

The Acorn Foundation is a community organisation based in the Western Bay of Plenty, which encourages people to leave a gift in their wills and/or their lifetimes, supporting their local community forever. Donations are pooled and invested, and the investment income is used to make donations to local charities, in accordance with the donors’ wishes. The capital remains intact. Since it was established in 2003, Acorn has distributed over $2.4million, and this year expects to distribute a further $500,000. It currently has invested funds of $13million. www.acornfoundation.org.nz, or www.nzcommunityfoundations.org.nz