Thursday, September 2, 2010

On This Day in New Zealand, by Ron Palenski

Books about New Zealand heritage come out all year, every year, in a seemingly never-ending flow these days. Most, sadly, are generics. They reprint the same stuff previously published elsewhere, adding simply photos taken more recently (perhaps), a bit of rearranging here, surmising there ...

Most I don't buy. My money tends to go on books which I'll use as reference material, either for work, historical society stuff, or Timespanner.

But this one, Ron Palenski's On This Day in New Zealand, has me hooked. It's a book which I'm picking up from time to time, browsing through, thinking, "Hey, that's something new!" then putting down again. A good day-by-day history, complete with a fairly good index (great for the reference side of the deal), and reasonably priced to boot, I'd recommend this as a buy for yourself, as a gift for someone you know likes light NZ  history in easily digestible chunks -- and as an addition to the burgeoning reference collection.

As an aside, this post marks number 1000 for the Timespanner blog, just a couple of weeks shy of the second anniversary. Thank you, all -- the followers, the readers, the contributors, my friends who patiently listen to my rabbitings, the staff at various archives, libraries, museums and fellow local historians who have all kept this going. It's been great fun so far. Cheers.


  1. Yes, yes, YES!!!!
    This is exactly the kind of thing I've been trying to do, a chronology of sorts.
    There is, seriously, not enough info 'out there' about NZ (or Oz) history, particularly 'On this day' type history notes.
    Good on him, I'll be seeing if local booksellers can get it in over this side of the ditch :)

  2. I could really go for an "On this day in Australia" type of book, Jayne. If you ever latch eyes on one, send me the details, please! I like learning about the history of the entire region, not just my home set of wind-swept isles ...

  3. There's at least 2 (that I know of) chronologies for Oz What happened when? by Anthony Barker - he's written a couple of chronologies that are pretty thorough.
    Another that I haven't got my mitts on is Timeline Australia by Barrie Sheppard which is split into different books/eras.
    Another I've only heard of is The A-Z of Australia by James Doherty.
    Just heard of Dicken's Dreadful Almanac which sounds like it could be fun *snort*.

  4. Congrats Lisa! A commendable effort indeed! We all so enjoy your efforts especially as we know how busy you are in the real world!