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Aussies & Kiwis : Australian & Newzealander writers
Langues sans frontières
Octobre 2010

New Zealand

Son of Gowan Duff (father) - a scientist - and Kuia Hinau (mother) (of Ngati Rangitihi and Tuwharetoa descent), he was born and raised in a State housing area in Rotorua. He was expelled from school and ran away from home, ending up as a State ward at Hamilton Boys’ Home. After numerous convictions for petty offences, Duff went to London. He has said this is where he "messed up but grew up". Duff ran various businesses of his own back in New Zealand and began to write full-time in 1985.

Once were warriors

New Zealand’s Maoris were fierce warriors, proud and violent, before the arrival of European colonialists. Having being subdued into a European way of life, this once warrior people are forced to live in poor housing estates with dead-end jobs (or none at all) and no hope for a better future. Jake Heke is the local hard man, free with his fists both at home and in the pub. His wife, Beth, is a loving mother, but an alcoholic who has more time for the booze than for her kids. They have 5 children ranging in age from 17 to 6. Although Jake and Beth are the main characters, it is through the effect on these children that we see the cost of life without hope.

Janet Frame is New Zealand’s most distinguished writer. Traumatic childhood events and other life experiences find displaced fictional treatment in her writing. However, Frame has time and again warned against the ‘blurring of the fine distinction between the writer’s work and the writer’s life’, the naive treatment of her fictional creations as autobiography. Before her death in 2004, she founded the Janet Frame Literary Trust.


Her first collection, "The Lagoon and Other Stories", published in 1954, was written while Frame stayed in a mental hospital. This new anthology spans her lifetime and includes the best of four published collections"The Lagoon and Other Stories, Snowman Snowman : Fables and Fantasies, The Reservoir : Stories and Sketches", and "You Are Now Entering the Human Heart"plus five previously unpublished stories. Often melancholy but containing wonderful detail, imagery, and emotion, her works cover a wide range of topics like childhood, madness, relationships, identity, and more.

Faces in the water

This novel depicts the confinement of the mad and the banishment and punishment of those whose only reaction to an insane world is to enter a realm of self-creation.

He was born in Lower Hutt, which has remained a frequent setting and subject, and graduated from Victoria University, then working as a journalist and consultant, but always as a committed writer. He has continued to live in the Hutt Valley or Eastbourne, apart from several periods in USA and in 1988 as the Katherine Mansfield Memorial Fellow at Menton. He has also held the Scholarship in Letters and other awards.

Mister Pip
The Dial Press

Mister Pip is a coming of age story set in a New Guinea island. The island is caught up in conflict between the local population (black), the mine owners (white) and the Niugini government (redskins). At the start of the story, the white people have fled the island with the sole exception of Mr Watts, who volunteers to teach in the school, assisted by his copy of Great Expectations and the wisdom of the parents of the children. Thus, Matilda starts to discover other worlds through the medium of fiction.

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