Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Rongoā Māori shines through bilingual Nanny Mihi story

Nanny Mihi’s Medicine/Ngā Rongoā a Nanny Mihi

Melanie Drewery

Illustrated by Suzanne Simpson

Translated by Kanapu Rangitauira

Nanny Mihi returns in the third book of the popular series to teach rongoā Māori and connect her grandkids with nature

The upsurge in public interest in traditional Māori medicine (rongoā Māori) and her own lifestyle close to nature on the Nelson coast led author Melanie Drewery instinctively to the theme of her newest book in the Nanny Mihi series for children.

So when the grandchildren arrive for the school holidays with colds, Nanny leads them to the forest and garden to find remedies — kawakawa for tea, mānuka for the bath, koromiko for headaches, and cabbage tree leaves for cuts and scratches.


By the time they’re well, Nanny is tired and scratched from their foraging — and the kids know just what she needs!

A spread of information follows the story, giving details about the medicines growing around us. 

Nanny Mihi’s Medicine/Ngā Rongoā o Nanny Mihi features a new illustration style by Suzanne Simpson. It’s also the first in the series to be fully bilingual, with sparkling reo Māori text by Rotorua-based translator Kanapu Rangitauira. 


The authors

Melanie Drewery (Ngāti Mutunga) works as a potter and writer from her home in Mapua, Nelson. She is an established children’s writer with over 20 titles to her name, including Nanny Mihi and the Rainbow and Nanny Mihi and the Bellbird.

Suzanne Simpson is an artist who has illustrated numerous picture books and educational texts for children. She lives with her family in Titirangi, Auckland. 

Kanapu Rangitauira (Te Arawa, Ngāti Porou, Te Whakatōhea) is a registered translator and teacher of te reo. He lives with his whānau in Rotoiti, Rotorua.

Publication: 15 June 2022  |  ISBN: 978-1-99-004211-9 | RRP $19.99

Paperback, 230 x 215 mm portrait, 32 pages, colour


Friday, June 10, 2022

Sharing the essentials of carving pounamu

Greenstone Carving

Techniques and Concepts in Pounamu 

Len Gale

The late Len Gale was not only a superb craftsman in many materials, but also a teacher who had the gift of explaining creative processes in simple terms. 

That shines through in this smart edition of his much-appreciated introduction to the art of greenstone carving, which had been out of print but still in demand for the past 20 years.

Greenstone Carving takes readers from the origins of pounamu/ greenstone through the basics of the artform — elements of design, essential tools and techniques, stone types and safety. 

Len guides readers through steps from making basic holes and discs to the creation of popular Māori designs such as hei tiki, toki, pekapeka, mere and hei matau. 

The text is accompanied by detailed drawings and photos,  enhanced by images of superb finished work from the Moko Pounamu studio, Ōtautahi/Christchurch.

This new book joins an expanding range of Māori craft books from Oratia, including Hirini Moko Mead's Te Whatu Tāniko: Tāniko Weaving Technique and Tradition and Te Toi Whakairo: The Art of Māori Carving.

The Author

Len Gale spent a lifetime committed to arts and crafts. After a varied career as a railway engineer, high-school teacher and artist, he devoted his later years to sharing and documenting aspects of his work, including in four books: Greenstone Carving, Wood Carving, Creative Metal and Technology Basics. Len passed away in 2016 at the age of 89.

Publication Date: 15 June 2022 |  ISBN: 978-1-99-004216-4 |  RRP $39.99
Paperback, 270 x 185 mm portrait, 32 pages colour
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