Book Review: ‘Black Rock White City’ by A. S. Patric: Five Stars, Baby!

I’m off to Melbourne to catch up with My-Friend-Jarrod next month and what better way to ready myself than to indulge in new Melbourne fiction. And my goodness. What fiction this is. Five, oh five, oh five glorious and shining stars, Mr. Poetic-Patric.

He can’t speak to any of it because it isn’t about words anymore. It’s about another existence. Neither of them is sure about the present but this is some kind of afterlife (17).

A spot of reading. (Image copyright C. Barron 2015)

A spot of reading. Unposed, of course.
(Image copyright C. Barron 2015)

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Bravo to the Winner of our ‘Kiwi Writer in Paris’ Giveaway!

What fun we had this evening here in (freezing cold) Auckland, New Zealand, staging a little French soiree to select the winner of a signed copy of Triumph: Collected Stories by Lizzie Harwood, as promoted here in A Kiwi Writer in Paris.

I reach into the golden bowl… (Image copyright C. Barron 2015)

I reach into the golden bowl…
(Image copyright C. Barron 2015)

…and our winner is…

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Win a Signed Book! Only Two More Sleeps to Enter…

If you haven’t already, leave a comment on my Kiwi Writer in Paris post and you could win a signed copy of Lizzie Harwood’s stay-awake-till-midnight-to-finish short story collection, Triumph.

It’s that easy.

But do it now, because entries close in two sleep’s time, on Saturday 20th June—Paris time, darling, because that’s where lovely Lizzie lives. Loving ‘lliteration this fine Thursday…

And just because I’m feeling nostalgic as all hell that it’s a whole year since I was in Paris, here’s me on a very happy day in my life:

Moi in Paris, July 2015

Moi in Paris, July 2015

Au revoir mes chéris!

Caroline x

Walking with Ghosts and Starlets

Some days you just know strange magic is at work.

Yesterday, as the sun was sinking in the sky, I walked down the alleyway at the end of Tasman Avenue, crossed the road and walked over the grass to the creek that slithered along the boundary of Rawalpindi Reserve in Mt. Albert. My intention was to walk in Evelyn’s footsteps in 1944—she’s a fictional character in my book—to see what she saw. Up ahead, her bare feet pounded a frantic rhythm. And then, a second set of footsteps, padding quietly beside mine. It was Linette, the real woman Evelyn was based on, a woman I would give anything to have met before she died.


Taking a walk with a character you wrote into being and a ghost might sound strange, but it couldn’t have felt more real. Continue reading

Kiwi Writer in Paris: Be in to Win a Signed Copy of Lizzie Harwood’s Latest Book

This week I interview talented New Zealand writer living in Paris, Lizzie Harwood, about life before and after writing, and our mutual obsession with Paris. From pink Mini Coopers to a school for creative inspiration—Lizzie isn’t afraid to dream big. We love that at 

You too can be part of the dream—leave a comment before Friday 20 June (5pm) and Lizzie will send one of you lucky things a signed copy of her book about feisty and fabulous women: Triumph: Collected Stories. Lizzie’s stories are read-past-midnight fantastic. 

Lizzie Harwood. Photo credit:

Lizzie Harwood. Photo credit:

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Arriving at the Mid-Point (and Other Tales from a Master in Creative Writing Class)

Hurrah! A profile page on the University of Auckland website (thanks Jonathan Burgess):

I am now half-way through my Master in Creative Writing at the University of Auckland. The goal: finish the novel by mid-November. 85,000 words. I’m 30,000 in and it feels like I’m just hitting my stride; after a year or more of research and thinking about Evelyn and Morgan, my two protagonists, I know exactly who they are and can hear their thoughts in my mind as I write. It’s like everything before has been pressure on the ocean, and now the wave is finally visible from the shore. The sand under my feet feels good and during the five weeks between semesters, I’m grabbing my surfboard, baby.

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Book Review: Wonder by R. J. Palacio

Wonder is like holding up a cut crystal to the light—from each angle it reflects and refracts differently. In Wonder, 10-year-old Auggie Pullman’s experience is refracted through his own point of view and those of people close to him: his sister Via, his friends Summer and Jack, Via’s boyfriend Justin, and Miranda (Via’s friend). In this edition (Borzoi 2012) there is also ‘The Julian Chapter’ written from the point of view of Auggie’s enemy.

Oh yeah, you should know: Auggie has serious facial abnormalities.

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