Louise Ryan

Louise’s love of reading sees her spending her days as an English and media teacher and her evenings trying to write. She gets a bit anxious if she doesn’t have at least a dozen books ready for reading next to her bed: the current pile includes books ranging from sports and biography, to politics and culture, anything on the media; and even a few cookbooks [which she devours like novels]. She lives in Auckland with her partner who has introduced her to speculative fiction and science books.


Fast: Everyday Recipes for Family and Friends, by Michael Van de Elzen

I really like Michael Van de Elzen and his ‘Food Truck’ series. In theory, I also like the concept of eating healthier and focusing on what we put into our bodies (even if I never manage it quite like I should). Therefore, I was looking forward to his latest cookbook, Fast. The introduction outlines his [...]

The Great New Zealand Cookbook

The Great New Zealand Cookbook

You might be familiar with The Great New Zealand Songbook, a collection of some of NZs most memorable tunes. Well this is the culinary version, brought to you by Murray Thom and his team. They have travelled the length of New Zealand to visit some of our most loved, respected and iconic foodies to collect [...]

Louise Nicholas: My Story, By Louise Nicholas with Philip Kitchin

It would be difficult to think of a more publicised case about the New Zealand police in modern times than this one. As many will know, Louise Nicholas accused a group of policeman of repeatedly pack raping her, and of using a baton to injure her further. What happened after the accusations were made was [...]

The Train to Paris, by Sebastian Hampson

Lawrence, in his very early twenties, is studying in Paris. After visiting his girlfriend in Madrid, he arrives at a small town, Hendaye, without a return ticket to Paris. There he meets the mysterious Elodie and begins an affair with her. And so Sebastian Hampson’s debut novel, The Train to Paris, begins. This is an [...]

the shining stephen king

The Shining, by Stephen King

I sometimes thought I was the only person who had never read a Stephen King novel. That I hadn’t might have something to do with my memories of hiding behind the couch while my sister watched Kujo, the film version of the novel in which a much loved pet turns feral. I have also never [...]

The Busy Woman’s Guide to High Energy Happiness

The Busy Woman’s Guide to High Energy Happiness, by Louise Thompson

Put your hand up if you have ever worried about the need to live the perfect life. It seems that striving to have it all is the modern person’s syndrome: the need to do everything, be everything and somehow manage to keep sane. This might account for the huge, and still growing, self-help book industry, [...]

The Priority List: A Teacher’s Final Quest to Discover Life’s Greatest Lessons, by David Menasche

How would any of us cope if we were struck by an illness so devastating that it forced us to stop doing the very thing that defined us? This is the situation David Menasche, a high school teacher in Miami, found himself in. By his own account he was an inspiring teacher, passionate about literature [...]

Untangling the web

Untangling the Web, by Aleks Krotoski

I went to a workshop hosted by Aleks Krotoski at last year’s Auckland Writer’s Festival. The talk was on serendipity and I’m a little ashamed to admit that, for most of the workshop, I had no idea what she or the other participants were talking about. In anticipation, however, of the talk I had purchased [...]

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