Posted by: Lisa Hill | April 10, 2011

Sensational Snippets: Wulf (2011), by Hamish Clayton

WulfI am reading Wulf, by debut Kiwi author Hamish Clayton.   The entire book is full of Sensational Snippets, let this one suffice:

So the little cabin was alight in the evenings, a small society of sailors in thrall to the exploits of Te Rop’raha, that most fearsome of natives with whom we desired to trade in a matter of days.  From then on it was clear to us that we were sailing under Cowell.  We were sailing under the bard of the Wolf.

His voice made green worlds.

Have you ever walked through these rooms of valleyed forest?

Have slanting vines,
or black trunks of palm, scaled as though carved,
their thin leaves of lines,
ever stopped you,

given you pause to consider,

and remember,
on the wallpaper of drawing rooms at home,

Let not this beautiful imagery delude you: there is menace afoot!

From Wulf, by Hamish Clayton, Penguin (New Zealand) 2011, p 60.

Update: click here to read my review of this superb book.
Availability: Fishpond: Wulf


  1. I’m a sucker for an attractive cover, and this one does it for me. Lovely writing, more importantly.

    The only Kiwi author I have read is Lynley Dodd. I love her work, but could stand to read some grown-up material too! Looking forward to your review of Wulf.


    • It is indeed a beautiful cover, properly designed unlike too many books these days. The designer is Keely O’Shannassy, using illustrations from watercolours by Charles Heaphy in the Alexander Turnbull Library: Sailing Ship 1850, and Kakariki 1839.
      PS Hunt out a couple of Katherine Mansfield’s short stories – you’ll find them online somewhere – if you enjoyed The Yellow Wallpaper, I think you’ll find them interesting.


  2. Thanks for the Katherine Mansfield suggestion. Linking her with The Yellow Wallpaper assures my interest, and she is not someone I ever thought of reading. Probably because I know nothing about her. I’m intrigued now…


    • I’m looking forward to seeing your review:)
      BTW I have just got hold of a copy of a bio of Mansfield, so expect to hear more about her on this blog!


  3. […] the most memorable of books that I’ve read since taking up blogging.  (See my review and a Sensational Snippet). It was too much to hope for that its successor could be quite as splendid, and The Pale North is […]


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