Coast A New Zealand Journey,
by Bruce Ansley and Jane Ussher (Godwit, RRP $75):
Kiwi writer Bruce Ansley has followed up his tribute to the legendary Mesopotamia high country station with another collaborative celebration of New Zealand’s beauty.
This time Ansley has teamed up with photographer Jane Ussher to the the story of our coastline.
The photographs are – of course – beautiful: how could they not be when the subject matter is so spectacular?
However, there is also an element of humour and eccentricity in some of the images, along with plenty of passion.
Over a two-year period, the creative pairing of Ansley and Ussher drove around New Zealand’s coast, travelling north, south, east and west to meet up with the remarkable Kiwis featured in this book and around our coastline.
They met lifeguards, fishermen, farmers, tree-huggers, science geeks and artists, along with every other type of Kiwi you could imagine, and book is the result: an “on-the-road” travelogue that tells the story of the coastline and its inhabitants.
And while the photographs are beautiful, the writing is also something special, offering a gently giggle at the quirky while embracing the beauty in a perfectly balance package that is just perfect.
We are lucky to live in such a photogenic part of the world and if you ever find yourself thinking the grass might be a tad greener elsewhere, a quick flick through the pages of this delightful book should convince you otherwise.
This would be a wonderful gift for a homesick expatriat Kiwi, or for anyone who appreciates the beauty of our country.