Reviews

Puketiti Station, cover

Puketiti Station

The story of an East Cape sheep station and the 180-year-old Williams legacy

Random House NZ, 2013

  • ‘The story of Puketiti Station, the historic Waipiro hill country farm inland and Te Puia Springs and Waipiro Bay on the North Island’s East Coast, reads like a ripping historical novel – except that it’s all true…

    Buy this book for its fascinating insight into farming life from colonial times to the future. Author Bee Dawson… is a wonderful writer who brings history to life, and her text is matched with captivating photos, new and old.’

    New Zealand Gardener, February 2014.

  • ‘… in the same spirit but further north, Bee Dawson and photographer Becky Nunes take readers to the East Cape in Puketiti Station: The story of an East Cape sheep station and the 180-year-old Williams legacy (Random House, $49.99). As a seasoned social historian, Dawson plunges into the station’s long and colourful human history with knowledge and a certain swagger. She’s helped by a story populated by a strong cast of characters. From clergyman William Williams’s first contacts with the region in 1833 to the challenges facing present owners Dan and Anna Russell, the book – with Nunes’s evocative photographs – is a satisfyingly rich distillation of Puketiti’s Maori and Pakeha past, present and future.’

    New Zealand Listener, December 7-13 2013.

  • ‘I have really enjoyed the new release Puketiti Station by Bee Dawson for a number of reasons. Not only was I delighted at the format, described as a paperback but in fact a really nice flexi-cover with dust-jacket, it made me recall the beautiful area in which Puketiti is situated.

    As a teenager and relatively fresh from an upbringing in the Orient, I was invited to give a hand at shearing time, on what must have been the neighbouring Takapau Station, where my older sister’s boyfriend worked. Full of excitement and anticipation, I was soon to learn the true meaning of hard work! After a 10 minute instruction on how to pick up, throw and check a fleece, I became an expert “rousie” who took a very personal pride in my work, particularly when told by the gang boss that the Maori shearing boys thought “that skinny Pakeha girl can sure work!”

    I do remember through the haze of perpetual exhaustion, the lovely and then, remote spot in Te Puia Springs where we stayed and where I experienced the wonderful hospitality and warmth of the local people. Little things like fresh maori bread, bareback horse-riding on the beach at Waipiro Bay, watching the local boys bring in kina and going up to the marae for my very first hangi!

    A book has surely done its job when you enjoy it and it also makes you smile!’

    Liz & the Team at Touchwood

Puketiti Station – book description