Monday, December 20, 2010

What If Katherine Mansfield Had Returned To New Zealand?

In this clever piece of speculative history Patrick Evans, author of acclaimed novel ‘GIFTED’, considers what could have been, rather than simply what was. Evans brings Katherine Mansfield back to Days Bay, composting her vege garden, writing with her cigarette hanging out of her mouth - her eyes squinting through the smoke.

Now this intriguing chapter from NEW ZEALAND AS IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN 2 is available as a FREE DOWNLOAD.

In 2006 NEW ZEALAND AS IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN introduced a new way of looking at New Zealand’s national experience – its history, society and politics, even its rugby – as 15 authors considered what could have been rather than simply what was. Now this new book offers a further 17 portraits of ‘New Zealand as it might have been’ – a mix of short stories and commentaries, some whimsical, others grim, each offering a perceptive and plausible new slant on significant events and personalities.

NEW ZEALAND AS IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN 2 extends the range of ‘what if’ scenarios to include literary figures – among them New Zealand’s most famous writer, Katherine Mansfield. It offers a variety of visions of a country that nearly was: 17 possible pasts, leading to 17 unique and different New Zealands.

You can also listen to an excellent series of radio documentaries, featuring authors from both volumes, at Radio NZ.


‘Like the additives beloved of petrol companies, these questions clean the cylinders of the brain. … there is enough provocation to fuel a hundred pub and party arguments about what might have been’

– Gerald Hensley, Dominion Post

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