Awesome Aotearoa

Awesome Aotearoa

Description Margaret Mahy’s History of New Zealand
Author Margaret Mahy Illustrated by Trace Hodgson
Publisher AUT Media – MacMillan (distribution)
RRP $29.99
GT Issue 2009 T2

Taking us from the begin­nings of New Zealand – Gondwanaland, through to the end of the last cen­tury, Mahy’s asides make this an accur­ate amus­ing story of the his­tory of our country.

Consisting of a massive 35 (short) chapters, the play on words is vin­tage Mahy – ‘Wars? A Bit Boering!’

The book cov­ers a huge range of top­ics and while they are really touched on lightly the cumu­lat­ive effect is an excel­lent cov­er­age of those things which have impacted on the devel­op­ment of New Zealand as a nation.

The approach is non-partisan and the tone in which it’s writ­ten could only have been achieved by someone with a fond­ness for both their coun­try and its inhabitants.

An enter­tain­ing read for astute chil­dren and adults alike. While the ref­er­ence to actual politi­cians may not be eas­ily under­stand­able later on, this is the only part I could com­ment on in this manner.

The book is enga­ging whether read­ing the entire book in one sit­ting or dip­ping into it a chapter at a time.

The illus­tra­tions, by well known Trace Hodgson, suit the quirky nature of Awesome Aotearoa, Hodgeson’s humour (slightly dif­fer­ent in itself) and Mahy’s seem well matched and the integ­ra­tion of the illus­tra­tions can­not be faulted.

Losing place in the text because of laugh­ing at the illus­tra­tions happened on more than one occasion!

“Perfect for bed­time read­ing, classroom dis­cus­sion and steal­ing from your kids’ book­shelf, Awesome Aotearoa is set to become a Kiwi clas­sic.” From the back cover of the book.

This quote can­not be improved on – a truly lovely book –

More Margaret Mahy Magic!

Leave a Reply