A Cemetery Tour

There’s a word for people with an inordinate fondness for cemeteries – taphophile. Being a tombstone tourist is an absorbing pastime – a bit of exercise, architecture and history all rolled into the one package – so whenever I get the chance, I join a cemetery guided tour. Ghost walks are also a fun way... Continue Reading →

Best Books 2022

Image credit: Schrodinger's Books Not as much time as I would have liked for reading this year but still I managed 63 books in total. Four of my top ten reads were books suggested by Mary the owner of Schrodinger’s Books in Petone for our monthly book discussion group. Another four were books I bought... Continue Reading →

Van Tassel Rides Again

A recent publication Sky Rider: Park Van Tassel and the Rise of Ballooning in the West by Gary B. Fogel sheds new light on the intrepid aeronaut who “took ballooning from Albuquerque to the rest of the world.” From the foreword: “Author and aviation historian Dr Gary Fogel traces Van Tassel’s life journey and show... Continue Reading →

Tiny Oz

Exciting news - my book The Only Living Lady Parachutist has been on Australian TV! Last year I shared my research on the Van Tassel sisters with Northern Pictures in Australia who were making a programme called Tiny Oz – where comedian Jimmy Rees and tiny craft artist JoAnne Bouzianis-Sellick unite with the extraordinary crafts... Continue Reading →

Best Books 2021

Another year of living covidly (hence no book fairs) but there have been some great New Zealand publications this year. A third of the book I read in 2021 and my top three recommendations are all recently published books by NZ authors. Check them out! Come Back to Mona Vale – Alexander McKinnon Family secrets,... Continue Reading →

Leila Adair & the American Consul

Wanganui Herald 9 June 1894 I drew on this article for a scene at the end of Chapter 20 in The Only Living Lady Parachutist, but I thought it was probably just bluster on Leila Adair’s part – that she never really intended making a complaint to the United States Consul because, despite her claims,... Continue Reading →


The Only Living Lady Parachutist is now out in the world — as print copies and as an ebook. The book launch was such fun — a bit like a wedding — and it’s all a bit of a blur. Fortunately there are photos. I organised a fabulous cake from Cake It Forward to match the... Continue Reading →

Cora Brown Potter: Actress

Now largely forgotten, Cora Urquhart Potter was an actress whose stage career attracted an extraordinary degree of misogyny and vitriolic criticism as well as plaudits and acclaim for her luminous beauty, lavish costumes and — less often — her acting talent. Treatment that Meghan, Duchess of Sussex could probably empathise with today. New York Public... Continue Reading →

Publication Pending

Cover design by LayaRoseArt.com At long last, my book will be published on 28 June, 2021! It's being printed locally by YourBooks in Wellington and distributed through Nationwide Book Distributors. At this stage I’m concentrating on just the physical book — the ebook will come later. The Only Living Lady Parachutist can be ordered directly... Continue Reading →

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