Pike River mine disaster book among award finalists

Rebecca Macfie

Christchurch journalist Rebecca Macfie’s account of the Pike River coal mine disaster is among the finalists in the New Zealand Post Book Awards.

Tragedy at Pike River Mine has been a bestseller since its publication late last year. Other finalists in the general non-fiction section include biographies of Labour Prime Minister Norman Kirk and Wellington art dealer Peter McLeavey.

A history of early New Zealand advertising, Promoting Prosperity, is a finalist in the illustrated non-fiction section.

Eleanor Catton’s Man Booker Prize winner The Luminaries leads the four finalists in the fiction category.

The finalists for the New Zealand Post Book Awards 2014, by category, are:

General non-fiction

  • A History of Silence by Lloyd Jones, Penguin Books
  • Peter McLeavey: The life and times of a New Zealand art dealer by Jill Trevelyan, Te Papa Press
  • The Mighty Totara: The life and times of Norman Kirk by David Grant, Random House NZ
  • Tragedy at Pike River Mine by Rebecca Macfie, Awa Press

Illustrated non-fiction

  • Coast: A New Zealand journey by Bruce Ansley & Jane Ussher, Random House NZ (Godwit)
  • Greer Twiss: Sculptor by Greer Twiss, Dr Robin Woodward & Haru Sameshima, Ron Sang Publications
  • New Zealand and the First World War 1914-1919 by Damien Fenton, Penguin Books in association with the Ministry for Culture and Heritage
  • Promoting Prosperity: The art of early New Zealand advertising by Peter Alsop and Gary Stewart, Craig Potton Publishing


  • The Bright Side of my Condition by Charlotte Randall, Penguin Books
  • The Last Days of the National Costume by Anne Kennedy, Allen & Unwin
  • The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton, Victoria University Press
  • Max Gate by Damien Wilkins, Victoria University Press


  • Gathering Evidence by Caoilinn Hughes, Victoria University Press
  • Heartland by Michele Leggott, Auckland University Press
  • Horse with Hat by Marty Smith, Victoria University Press
  • Us, then by Vincent O’Sullivan, Victoria University Press

The winners and the Book of the Year will be named at a function at Te Papa, Wellington, on August 27.

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