Posted by: Lisa Hill | May 10, 2016

2016 Stephen Daisley wins major prize in Ockham New Zealand Book Awards winners

The winners of the 2016 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards were announced today.  (Thanks Twitter!)

*drum roll* (in order of tweets)

  • Melissa Matutina Williams wins EH McCormick Best First Book Award for Panguru and the City;
  • Chris Tse wins Best First Book Award poetry!
  • Richard Nunns wins inaugural Judith Binney Illustrated Non Fiction best first book award for Te Ara Puoro
  • David Coventry wins the Hubert Church Award best first book award – fiction for The Invisible Mile
  • Witi Ihimaera wins the General Non-Fiction category for Maori Boy. ‘An extremely valuable contribution to this country’
  • David Eggleton wins Poetry category for The Conch Trumpet. ‘Eggleton’s energy is unquenched in this collection’.
  • Tangata Whenua wins illustrated nonfiction category. Congratulations Aroha Harris, Atholl Anderson and Judith Binney.
  • Stephen Daisley wins 50k Acorn Foundation Lit Prize for Coming Rain!  {A wonderful book!  See my review.)

(Yes, of course we’re going to claim Stephen Daisley as an Aussie! He lives in Australia, his book is about Australian life, and it’s published by Aussie publisher Text. )

Congratulations to all the authors, editors and publishers!

The longlisted titles with links to my reviews were:

The Antipodeans by Greg McGee (Upstart Press) on my TBR
Astonished Dice: Collected Short Stories by Geoff Cochrane (Victoria University Press)
The Back of His Head by Patrick Evans (Victoria University Press) (See my review and a Sensational Snippet)
Chappy by Patricia Grace (Penguin Random House) See my review
The Chimes by Anna Smaill (Hodder & Stoughton) See my review
Coming Rain by Stephen Daisley (Text Publishing) See my review
The Invisible Mile by David Coventry (Victoria University Press)
The Legend of Winstone Blackhat by Tanya Moir (Penguin Random House) (Update 4/12/15, abandoned.  I don’t usually review books I didn’t continue, but you can read my thoughts at Goodreads).
The Pale North by Hamish Clayton (Penguin Random House) See my review
Reach by Laurence Fearnley (Penguin Random House) See my review

Illustrated Non Fiction:
Zealandia: Our Continent Revealed by Nick Mortimer and Hamish Campbell (Penguin Random House)
My Family Table: Simple Wholefood Recipes from ‘Petite Kitchen’ by Eleanor Ozich (Allen & Unwin)
Hello Girls and Boys! A New Zealand Toy Story by David Veart (Auckland University Press)
Tuatara: Biology and Conservation of a Venerable Survivor by Alison Cree (Canterbury University Press)
Real Modern: Everyday New Zealand in the 1950s and 1960s by Bronwyn Labrum (Te Papa Press)
Coast. Country.Neighbourhood.City edited by Michael Barrett (Six Point Press)
Te Ara Puoro: A Journey into the World of Māori Music by Richard Nunns (Potton and Burton)
New Zealand Photography Collected by Athol McCredie (Te Papa Press)
Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History by Atholl Anderson, Judith Binney, Aroha Harris (Bridget Williams Books)
Tramping: a New Zealand History by Shaun Barnett and Chris MacLean (Potton and Burton)

General Non Fiction:
Maurice Gee: Life and Work by Rachel Barrowman (Victoria University Press)
Terrain: Travels through a deep landscape by Geoff Chapple (Penguin Random House)
The Villa at the Edge of the Empire: One Hundred Ways to Read a City by Fiona Farrell (Penguin Random House)
Māori Boy: A Memoir of Childhood by Witi Ihimaera (Penguin Random House)
Lost and Gone Away by Lynn Jenner (Auckland University Press)
Kitchens: The New Zealand Kitchen in the 20th Century by Helen Leach (Otago University Press)
Panguru and the City, Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua: An Urban Migration History byMelissa Matutina Williams (Bridget Williams Books)
Outcasts of the Gods? The Struggle over Slavery in Māori New Zealand by Hazel Petrie (Auckland University Press)
Journey to a Hanging by Peter Wells (Penguin Random House)
The Healthy Country? A History of Life and Death in New Zealand by Alistair Woodward and Tony Blakley (Auckland University Press)

The Art of Excavation by Leilani Tamu (Anahera Press)
Shaggy Magpie Songs by Murray Edmond (Auckland University Press)
How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes by Chris Tse (Auckland University Press)
The Night We Ate the Baby by Tim Upperton (Haunui Press)
Otherwise by John Dennison (Auckland University Press)
Mr Clean & The Junkie by Jennifer Compton (Mākaro Press)
Song of the Ghost in the Machine by Roger Horrocks (Victoria University Press)
Tender Machines by Emma Neale (Otago University Press)
The Conch Trumpet by David Eggleton (Otago University Press)
Dear Neil Roberts by Airini Beautrais (Victoria University Press)

To read about the longlisted titles click here.

The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards shortlist will be announced on 8 March 2016, and the winners (including the four Best First Book Awards and a Māori Language award) will be announced at a ceremony on 10 May 2016, held as the opening night event of the Auckland Writers Festival.


  1. Joyful congrats to Stephen and all his fellow kiwi authors.


    • I am so pleased he won. His novel Traitor was terrific too:)


  2. I think I missed your review of Coming Rain – it sounds like a book that I would benefit from reading (I’m not sure ‘enjoy’ is the right word). Luckily my library has a copy.


    • It’s one of those memorable books that you many not ‘enjoy’ but you will never forget.


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