January / February 2015 (48)

Mt John : The First 50 Years

ISBN: 9781927145623

Authors: John Hearnshaw, Alan Gilmore    Publisher: Canterbury University Press

Mt John University Observatory is New Zealand's only professional research observatory for optical astronomy. John Hearnshaw, a past director of the observatory...


Mt John University Observatory is New Zealand's only professional research observatory for optical astronomy. John Hearnshaw, a past director of the observatory, has delved into the observatory archives to write this engaging account of Mt John's fascinating history. Alan Gilmore, the recently retired observatory superintendent, has added to this with his personal recollections, having worked at the observatory for more than 34 years. Fifty years ago, in 1965, Mt John University Observatory was founded at Lake Tekapo in the Mackenzie Basin to take advantage of the favourable conditions for astronomy. Telescopes were installed, and in 1981 a lighting ordinance helped protect the site from light pollution. Astronomical research had been thriving on Mt John for 40 years when astro-tourism started to take off, largely due to the venture company Earth & Sky. Today Mt John is both a research observatory and a mecca for stargazing astro-tourists, who come to see the pristine landscape and the amazing dark night skies. It is one of the most beautiful astronomical observatories in the world, but also a place with an often turbulent history, having been rocked by personality battles, funding shortfalls, student demonstrations and on one occasion, a destructive fire. In spite of all that, its scientific work has been an outstanding success, and Mt John's research work, especially in stellar astronomy, is known and respected around the world. "Mt John - The First 50 Years: A celebration of half a century of optical astronomy at the University of Canterbury" is richly illustrated, with more than 180 figures, many of them outstanding landscape and nightscape photographs taken by the acclaimed Tekapo photographer, Fraser Gunn.


Bind: hardback


Pages: 216


Dimensions: 303 x 232 mm


Publication Date: 16-03-2015


$59.99 $19.99
Canterbury Country Houses V

ISBN: 9781877303449

Author: Rodney Wells and Tessa Ward    Publisher: The Caxton Press

Canterbury has a rich tapestry of country homesteads - all with their own unique stories to tell. There is an interesting variety of architectural styles and in...


Canterbury has a rich tapestry of country homesteads - all with their own unique stories to tell. There is an interesting variety of architectural styles and interiors chosen for the homes. All the homesteads and the families who have occupied them during many decades, are a wonderful part of Canterbury's architectural, artistic, botanical and social history.


Pages: 163


Dimensions: 273 x 210 x 10 mm


Publication Date: 08-12-2014


$39.99
A Gallipoli Soldiers Secret

ISBN: 9780473287894

Author: Buket Uzuner    Publisher: Antares Publishing

BESTSELLER The novel A Gallipoli Soldier’s Secret is the story of a New Zealand woman’s pilgrimage to Turkey to discover the truth about her great-grandfath...


BESTSELLER The novel A Gallipoli Soldier’s Secret is the story of a New Zealand woman’s pilgrimage to Turkey to discover the truth about her great-grandfather’s fate - a Gallipoli soldier who never returned home. During her search she stumbles over dark secrets which have been hidden in a Turkish village for decades. They are so sensitive that disclosure threatens embarrassment for villagers and two old foes -New Zealand and Turkey.
Lyrically written, A Gallipoli Soldier’s Secret paints an informative picture of life in a Turkish village, Turkish culture and history, and the suffering and annihilation Turks endured in WWI. It follows the war through the stories of two soldiers – New Zealander Alistair John Taylor and Turk Ali Osman. Their lives converge with unexpected consequences.
A Gallipoli Soldier’s Secret is unique in that it provides a glimpse of the war from a Turkish perspective. It also vividly reveals village life and a journey of inner conflict and self-discovery.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 300


Dimensions: 135 x 216 x 40 mm


Publication Date: 10-02-2015


$34.99
To Hell With Poverty

ISBN: 9781877303463

Author: Rodney Laredo    Publisher: The Caxton Press

A modern day Downton Abbey
Over a twelve month period the author and his wife bought to an extremely proper and aristocratic household a down to earth men...


A modern day Downton Abbey
Over a twelve month period the author and his wife bought to an extremely proper and aristocratic household a down to earth mentality which confused and intrigued their employers. Age old ways tied this Kiwi pair in knots and caused sleepless nights but at best provided some of the funniest experiences of their lives.
Their exceedingly wealthy employers couldn't boil water or sweep leaves. The Laredos could, so a punt was taken to hire them by Mr and Mrs Worlingham who required everything to be picked up and put down for them.
Shoes had to be polished, clothes laid out and drinks poured. The Laredos acted as marriage counsellors, relationship consultants for their teenage daughters, truce negotiators for family feuds and issues concerning staff rivalry. Acting as go betweens and smoke screens became skills they never knew they had.
Aside from life at Chantborough Court there were also local village people who curried favour with this new domestic couple from down under hoping they would open doors to the 'Big House' that most villagers only dreamt of passing through. They became the subject of gossip, personality hang-ups and intrigue - learning to be discreet was everything. Ultimately friendships were forged that have held fast, but getting established and becoming accepted was often testy, frequently funny beyond words and ultimately too good to have missed.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 224


Dimensions: 148 x 210 mm


Publication Date: 20-03-2015


$34.95 $24.99
Akaroa Cocksfoot

ISBN: 9781927145630

Author: Vaughan Wood    Publisher: Canterbury University Press

Soon after the introduction of cocksfoot to Banks Peninsula in the mid-19th century, Akaroa cocksfoot grass seed conquered the market - first in New Zealand, th...


Soon after the introduction of cocksfoot to Banks Peninsula in the mid-19th century, Akaroa cocksfoot grass seed conquered the market - first in New Zealand, then in Australia, and finally in Europe. At the height of the industry, Akaroa cocksfoot was one of the most significant industries in Canterbury, with annual earnings for Banks Peninsula of more than $10 million per annum. It was responsible for the loss of almost all the Peninsula's unmillable forest. And yet, a generation or two later, the Akaroa cocksfoot seed industry has almost entirely disappeared. More than a century after the industry reached its peak, Vaughan Wood celebrates its remarkable story. The history of Akaroa cocksfoot is one that embodies many facets of Canterbury life: the farmers and harvesters, the seed merchants, and the engineering and transport firms. It was shaped by the science, politics and world-trade patterns of the time and is thus a story with more than just local interest, This fascinating narrative includes: * The history of the Akaroa cocksfoot seed industry, from the introduction of cocksfoot seed into New Zealand, through the start of its international success in the early 1880s and its peak around the turn of the 20th century, to the end of the industry in the 1950s and 1960s. * A detailed look at the industry in its heyday, following the journey taken by the seed from the growing crop to the traded commodity. * Recognition of the lasting legacy Akaroa cocksfoot has left on both the landscape and the local seed industry in New Zealand.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 148


Dimensions: 148 x 210 mm


Publication Date: 30-11-2014


$29.99
Beneath the Heart of the Sea

ISBN: 9781843915607

Author: Owen Chase    Publisher: Hesperus Press

Discover the amazing true story behind the inspiration for Herman Melville's Moby Dick and the new feature film Heart of the Sea. A tragic yet riveting narratio...


Discover the amazing true story behind the inspiration for Herman Melville's Moby Dick and the new feature film Heart of the Sea. A tragic yet riveting narration of life and death and man against the elements, Beneath the Heart of the Sea is an extreme account of shipwreck survival.On the morning of November 20,1820, in the Pacific Ocean 2,000 miles from the coast of South America, an enraged sperm whale rammed the Nantucket whaleship Essex. As the boat began to sink, her crew of twenty, including first mate Owen Chase, grabbed what little they could before piling into frail boats and taking to the open seas. So began their four-month ordeal and struggle for survival. A bleak story, only eight men survived having endured starvation and dehydration, giving in to cannibalism, murder and insanity. Owen Chase recorded the extraordinary account in his autobiography, originally published in 1821, which Hesperus is proud to reissue in a stylish new edition. With the Hollywood film Heart of the Sea, directed by Ron Howard and featuring Chris Hemsworth in the role of Owen Chase hitting cinemas in March 2015, readers will be enthralled to discover the intense, original story behind the film.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 112


Publication Date: 20-02-2015


$21.99
Tales from the Queen of the Desert

ISBN: 9781843915478

Author: Gertrude Bell    Publisher: Hesperus Press

Gertrude Bell CBE is rightly known as 'The Queen of the Desert' and a new Hollywood film based on her life, featuring Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis ...


Gertrude Bell CBE is rightly known as 'The Queen of the Desert' and a new Hollywood film based on her life, featuring Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis and Robert Pattinson is due for release in 2015.A woman far ahead of her time, Gertrude gained a first from Oxford at a time when very few subjects were even open to women. She went on to take an active interest in politics before embarking on her one-woman travels across the Middle East. She chronicled her journeys through Iraq, Persia, Syria and beyond and her important diplomatic work, with characteristic wit and incisiveness. Despite the many achievements of her working life, sadly her personal life was marred by losing the great love of her life, Major Charles Doughty-Wylie, from which she never recovered. She died in 1926 of an apparent overdose of sleeping pills. With extracts from two of Bell's most compelling works of travel writing, Persian Pictures and Syria: The Desert and the Sown, this Hesperus edition is truly a unique collection of work.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 304


Publication Date: 20-02-2015


$24.99
Riders of the Purple Sage

ISBN: 9781843915614

Author: Zane Grey    Publisher: Hesperus Press

Written by the bestselling Western author of all time, Riders of the Purple Sage can be seen at the original Western. When Lassiter, a gun-slinging avenger in b...


Written by the bestselling Western author of all time, Riders of the Purple Sage can be seen at the original Western. When Lassiter, a gun-slinging avenger in black with a fearsome reputation, rides into the Mormon village of Cottonwoods in Southern Utah, he finds a town in turmoil. An underhand land battle is in full force. Beautiful young rancher Jane Withersteen is in possession of the richest land holding in the Cottonwoods, but the Mormon church have plans to take control by forcing the unwilling Jane into marrying Elder Tull. Outnumbered and outgunned, Jane sees no escape...until Lassiter arrives.A lone gunman fighting for justice, Lassiter has his own agenda. His sister has been kidnapped by a Mormon proselytizer and he is determined to find out what happened to her. Jane finds herself drawing ever closer to Lassiter while he tries to unravel the complex web of intrigue that underlies the corrupt village.Adapted five times for film in the past hundred years, the enduring affection for the Western genre doesn't show any sign of decreasing. In Lassiter, Zane Grey creates an iconic prototype hero that inspired many books and films to come. With a complex plot and engaging with issues of morality, isolation and religion, Riders of the Purple Sage is more than just the first Western - it is a classic.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 368


Publication Date: 20-02-2015


$24.99
On the Wild West

ISBN: 9781843916260

Author: Mark Twain    Publisher: Hesperus Press

The latest in Hesperus's 'On' series comes from master travel writer Mark Twain and concentrates on his journey through America's Wild West, tapping into the pe...


The latest in Hesperus's 'On' series comes from master travel writer Mark Twain and concentrates on his journey through America's Wild West, tapping into the perennial interest in this period in history.From 1861 to 1867, a young Mark Twain travelled through the Wild West. Following an abortive foray into a career as a Confederate Cavalry man he opted instead to head off on a stagecoach road trip with his brother Orion, who had just been appointed Secretary of Nevada Territory. Twain sets out on an epic voyage from Missouri to Sacramento. He will visit Salt Lake City, witness the beginning of the real estate boom and try his hand at silver mining in Nevada. Travelling in turn by boat, train and coach, through mountains and deserts, he comes across Native Americans, visits a Mormon village and becomes stranded in a snowstorm. Discovering a land in the grasp of a boom and bust mentality, Twain is caught up in the lust for instant wealth which remains always tantalisingly close. Priceless anecdotes detail the amusing mishaps and bad judgement calls that ensure that the author's riches are kept at arm's length. Even at this early stage of his budding career, Twain's trademark humour is visible - no one is safe from Twain's wit. Train drivers, coachmen, fellow passengers and locals, all become victims of the author's pen as he hones his trade.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 144


Publication Date: 20-02-2015


$21.99
Pollyanna Grows Up

ISBN: 9781843915522

Author: Eleanor Porter    Publisher: Hesperus Press

In this sequel to the classic children's book Pollyanna, our beloved heroine continues to cheer up everyone around her with her sunny personality and relentless...


In this sequel to the classic children's book Pollyanna, our beloved heroine continues to cheer up everyone around her with her sunny personality and relentless good humour. When we left Pollyanna at the end of the first book, she was trying very hard to stay positive after a car accident injured her spine and paralysed her. Now old fans and new will be intrigued to read about Pollyanna's miraculous recovery: she can walk - something she was assured she would never be able to do again!Now that Pollyanna's aunt has married kind old Dr Chilton, the newlyweds whisk Pollyanna off to Europe every winter and all three start to enjoy their newfound family. Pollyanna also has the chance to travel to Boston, and makes plenty of new friends as well as reuniting with her oldest pals. As Pollyanna grows up, she matures into a thoughtful young lady but never loses her characteristic spark of good cheer. Her goal in life is still to be glad under all circumstances, but with her aunt experiencing a tragedy and Pollyanna herself getting embroiled in a complicated love triangle, it will take a special type of person to come through it all with a smile on her face.Luckily Pollyanna is a very special young lady indeed.


Bind: paperback


Pages: 256


Publication Date: 20-02-2015


$21.99
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