New Zealand: A Personal Discovery
by Dick Parsons

"Thus this sleeping land… was moulded by exploitation, wars and the gospel into this beautiful and productive land we were about to explore."

Starting with prehistoric times and moving seamlessly to present day, Parsons paints a vivid picture of the three islands that make up New Zealand. The gorgeous green valleys, lovely volcanoes, and panoramic ocean views are well worth the trip. But if a trip to this beautiful country isn’t in the cards for you, then Parsons’ book is the next best thing. Parsons writes with an enchantingly mischievous tone that makes the book a joy to read. Whether he’s writing about a disappointingly modern ferry, the Lynx, or about the tendency of buildings to be moved from one side of the road to the other, Parsons’ writing style makes every adventure intriguing.

His travel book escorts readers from Auckland—which has a fantastic view of the volcano Rangitoto—to Christchurch and many places in between. Along the way, the author points to some interesting parallels between New Zealand and his own native United Kingdom, including the historical significance of railway travel. The birth of New Zealand’s railway in the latter half of the 19th century was particularly important, as the country’s topography made other modes of travel challenging.

Throughout the entire book, readers are treated to numerous intriguing snapshots of historical and cultural information, chief among them being the roots of the native Maoris and the adventures of Captain James Cook. Captain Cook was a famous British explorer and cartographer who roamed the seas during the 18th century. The first recorded circumnavigation of this country and the first known European contact with eastern Australia are among his most well-known accomplishments. Any reader who has even a passing interest in years gone by will find this work of historical tourism to be a well-researched and entertaining read.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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