Read the parihaka woman by Witi Ihimaera Online


Richly imaginative and original, weaving together fact and fiction, The Parihaka Woman sets the remarkable story of Erenora against the historical background of the turbulent and compelling events that occurred in Parihaka during the 1870s and 1880s.Parihaka is the place Erenora calls home, a peaceful Taranaki settlement overcome by war and land confiscation. As her worldRichly imaginative and original, weaving together fact and fiction, The Parihaka Woman sets the remarkable story of Erenora against the historical background of the turbulent and compelling events that occurred in Parihaka during the 1870s and 1880s.Parihaka is the place Erenora calls home, a peaceful Taranaki settlement overcome by war and land confiscation. As her world is threatened, Erenora must find within herself the strength, courage and ingenuity to protect those whom she loves. And, like a Shakespearean heroine, she must change herself before she can take up her greatest challenge and save her exiled husband, Horitana.The Parihaka Woman is a wonderfully surprising, inventive and deeply moving riff on fact and fiction, history and imagination from one of New Zealand's finest and most memorable storytellers....

Title : the parihaka woman
Author :
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ISBN : 12949849
Format Type : e-Book
Number of Pages : 191 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

the parihaka woman Reviews

  • Debbie
    2019-06-11 22:49

    The promotional blurb says it all - There has never been a New Zealand novel quite like The Parihaka Woman. This was an odd sort of book. I don't think I would call it 'fiction', its really more like 'faction'.Witi Ihimaera is a great writer, but he had a bit of professional bother back in 2009 when he was found to have plagiarised other writers in his novel The Trowenna Sea. So how do you write a historical novel without running the risk of plagiarising anyone? You make the narrator of the novel tell the story in a semi-academic way so that you can include fully fledged quotations just like in a history book. It's a very odd technique that doesn't make for fluid reading.Nevertheless, this book contains some of New Zealand's most fascinating early history, and that alone is reason enough to read it. This is the story of colonialism and the collision of two cultures of unequal power. It is the story of Taranaki iwi and two of their leaders, Te Whiti and Tohu, who fought back against the land confiscations their people suffered at the hands of the government and settlers, by building their village of Parihaka, and carrying out a programme of passive resistance. The history of Parihaka is told through the fictional story of Erenora and Horitana. We see how the Maori were hounded from their land, arrested and held without trial for long periods. Many of the prisoners were sent to prisons in the South Island, a long way from their family and their land. They were often treated badly in prison and it was many years before they were finally released, never having had a trial.The fictional story of Horitana and Erenora and their evil nemesis Piharo, is really just a vehicle through which to impart the history. It is indeed an odd book, but I learned more about New Zealand's history from reading it than I ever learnt at school - and that is very sad.

  • Sweetp-1
    2019-06-22 04:50

    The narrative style of this book is truly odd, and at times it does not make for a particularly reader-friendly book. Ihimaera has blended together fiction and fact - there is a narrator speaking directly to the reader (who mostly seemed superfluous) who is researching Parihaka as part of a whanau project after discovering the diary of Erenora - the Parihaka woman. So at times a chapter can start with some academic research , full quotations complete with footnotes, and then switch to a third person narrative from Erenora's viewpoint (the fictional part). I often found I would be immersed in Erenora's story only to be pulled out of it again by the narrator and another of his not-so-witty observations. As another reviewer has surmised perhaps this weird fiction+ fact style is due to the plagiarism debacle surrounding another of Ihimaera's books and his attempt to cover his butt this time. IDK, in any case I wish he had just kept with a pure fictional style as I found Erenora's story to be deeply moving and quite captivating. Parihaka has always interested me, and though I did find the way all the information was cobbled together a bit off putting, this book includes a lot of background historical and political scene setting that helps understand how the sacking of Parihaka came about. It is a truly shameful piece of New Zealand history and this book does a good job of conveying both the struggles of the Parihaka peoples and the epic journey of one woman to find her incarcerated husband. I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of post-colonial New Zealand as Erenora travels from Taranaki to Te Wai Pounamu - the familiar scenery, landmarks and Kai Tahu whanau names gave it a sense of authenticity that really brought this part of the novel to life for me. I think perhaps after struggling with the Taranaki Maori dialect (written so the 'h' sound is missing...whare becomes w'are)it was a bit of relief for me to go home south ;)Despite my gripes with easy of readability and the just weird style of it, this book was a touching and yet informative read and one I will remember for a long time, easy 4 stars.""Enough is enough," Te Whiti continued. "We will run no longer. In peace shall we settle here, for good and forever, and we will call our new kainga Parihaka.""

  • Naomi
    2019-06-05 05:56

    This is a chapter in New Zealand's history which I am reasonably familiar and is the thread that weaves the cloth of my sense of 'homeland'. I am part of this history. My ancestors were the ones being allocated land that had been confiscated from the Maori. My mother's forefathers 'owned' prime land in Manaia just a little way around the mountain from Parihaka. My father's forebears won a plot of land in Mokauiti by ballet. Ihimaera did beautifully at recreating the hope and dreams of the people of Parihaka and the events that led to the creation of and necessity for a refuge in which to fight from. I loved Erenora, that warrior woman, willing to protect her family by whatever means possible. And was absolutely devastated anew by the unfair treatment of the people of Parihaka, indeed the people of Taranaki who were forced to create Parihaka on the back of years of persecution. And what a beautiful dream they had. In 2008 I went to the Parihaka International Peace Festival which was an amazing experience. They had speakers and music and a real spirit of inclusiveness. I am sorry that it didn't get off the ground financially and sincerely hope that it can find the financial backing that it needs. That place is a sacred place. It is palpable.

  • Clare
    2019-05-29 04:43

    This was an OK read. I felt the book was not particularly easy to read - loads of historical background to get through and the way the author chose to narrate the book seemed pointless and frustrating.Also the main character was too flawless - to the point of being un-human or saintly. To me it lacked credibility.Having said that, once the book got going in the last half, it was a readable and enjoyable story.Plus, it is a very important story to be told so I was pleased that I read it.... and saw things from another perspective.

  • Pip
    2019-06-08 01:49

    This was a book of two halves. The first part was build up and the land protests at Parihaka in the late 1870s. The second half was about the heroine travelling across NZ to try to find her husband who had been imprisioned. I think that Witi Ihimaera tried to be a little clever in the combination of fact and fiction, and the voice of the narrator seemed unecessary. But he does know how to pull threads of a story together into shape, and the story mostly enhances the history. I am fascinated by Parihaka anyway.

  • Kiri
    2019-06-18 04:02

    Completely blown away by this book. Thanks to Joni for lending it to me! Seeing as I am calling Taranaki home at the moment, it was really important that I read this book. One of those harrowing but ultimately inspiring books of the capabilities man has to be cruel to one another. Erenora is a phenomenal woman and the clever way of mixing history, journalism and her narrative was quite a written achievement. Brilliant book.

  • Kim
    2019-06-10 23:02

    I have been fascinated with Parihaka and Te Whiti's peaceful protest for a long time. It has been difficult to find information on this subject. Thank you Witi for fleshing this out with thorough research and sensitivity

  • Briar
    2019-05-29 01:56

    Combines history with fiction in an interesting way, with a strong female main character. An important revelation for all New Zealanders of the injustices in the way land was stolen from Maori by the government of the day

  • Carol
    2019-06-13 00:56

    An exceptional account of the history of the Taranaki area in New Zealand, and the really turbulent times in the 1880s.

  • Becks
    2019-06-08 23:44

    Great look at Taranaki's history and lovely retelling of it. Erenora is an amazing, humble woman and her character completely hooked me in ;-)

  • Sian Foan
    2019-06-14 02:48

    Having read some mixed reviews before I read this, I was pleasantly surprised. I thought it was a great way to learn about this important event in NZ history and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  • Carmen
    2019-06-03 02:42

    This is one of the best books that I have ever read. A story of love and the amazing strength of maori women and an insight into Parihaka. A must read!!

  • Joanne Young
    2019-06-19 22:48

    Another great historical novel. I was every interested in the facts and read all the references. A book for all NZ'ers. I look forward to the movie.

  • Colette OConnor
    2019-06-09 22:45

    Loved this story.A great insight in to Parihaka and what it stands for.

  • Leanne
    2019-06-28 06:01

    Fantastic story about a courageous woman and real story of Parihaka.

  • Sherilyn
    2019-06-17 05:34

    The compelling story of a strong woman and the man she loved set in the troubled times of Maori and pakeha landwars at Parihaka. Witi weaves a wonderful tale of fact and fiction together.

  • Bronwen Jones
    2019-06-10 05:01

    An absorbing read. Mix of fact and fiction, with notes to let us know which is which. The story is narrated by an elderly, fictional Maori teacher and amateur historian, who extensively quotes a diary by the fictional heroine from Parihaka, Erenora. But the background is the true story of events and actions surrounding the routing of the peaceful Taranaki kainga, Parihaka, in the 1870s and 1880s for the purpose of European settlement--and the efforts by Parihaka women to find their men who were shipped to gaols in the South Island. The Parihaka Woman is heart-rending in places. And as the elderly narrator says, imagine if Pakeha had worked with Maori as partners in those early years of European settlement--New Zealand would have had a strength to rival the (eventually) rotting Empire. This is an excellent novel that tells an important story.

  • Alesa
    2019-06-01 05:53

    This is a very unusual historical novel. It's written by the author of The Whale Rider, who is a Maori. This book tells the story of a nonviolent movement in the late 1800's in NZ, where the Maoris tried to protect one of their settlements against white encroachment by using peaceful protests. it didn't work (of course, sigh), and all kinds of brutalities ensued. It makes you wonder that any Maoris, or their culture, survive today.Based on solid research, this book is also part romance. The characters are interesting. But mostly, it is the respect for Maori tradition and culture that makes this book worth reading. I didn't understand the phrases written in the Maori language, but could still follow the plot.

  • Sheila Pritchard
    2019-06-14 01:04

    I feel ashamed that I know so little about NZ history. This book was an excellent and gripping historical novel that revealed the unjust and tyrannical treatment the British settlers heaped upon the Maori population in Taranaki. The peaceful resistance of the people of Parihaka is a part of NZ history we should celebrate and learn from. I have heard it suggested that instead of Guy Fawkes day we should have Parihaka day. An excellent idea in my view. Another inspiring aspect of this book was its focus on the courage of women. While the key character (Erenora) is fictional she represents so many amazing women. Imagine traveling from Taranaki to Dunedin in the 1860's with no idea of how you would get from one place to the next!

  • Elizabeth Rayner
    2019-06-11 06:54

    This short book has given me a huge appreciation of what the Maori people went through in the 1800s as European people and law were inflicted on them. It describes the events over a lifetime which really broke the spirit of the strong, proud and intelligent people. Sadly that spirit is still broken. The book has helped me with my minuscule understanding of the Maori view at my work.Once the background is paved, the book is a real page turner as it describes places in NZ from a Maori woman's journey to find her husband.

  • Camille
    2019-06-21 01:38

    I usually love Witi Ihimaira's books but found this one disappointing. While I loved reading about the history of Parihaka and Te Kooti (which was well captured) I found the structure of the book distracting and annoying (I think he was trying to write it in the oral tradition of speaking on the marae). It was fascinating learning about the strength of some of the key Maori woman resident at Parihaka though

  • JaneBoz
    2019-06-04 23:58

    Based on historical events, ' The Parihaka Woman' was educational, saddening and inspirational too. What a rugged (understatement) time our tipuna endured, yet courage and fortitude remained. Helped me to better understand some of the factual information about Parihaka. I learned a lot of historical facts from this book, and because it is written as a novel, it was easier to digest. Highly recommend this book!

  • Christina
    2019-06-23 23:34

    I enjoyed this book. As an immigrant to New Zealand, I found it interesting reading a book based on Maori/New Zealand history. It is historical fiction, so don't take it as a perfect reflection of events. If you have issues with authors breaking the "4th wall" maybe not for you - Ihimaera floats in and out with a narrator, in addition to the main character's narration. Overall an interesting story and enjoyable read.

  • Jen G
    2019-06-19 22:54

    Living away from New Zealand I pine for a good kiwi read. I picked this up my last time home. I enjoyed it enough, it had moments or brilliance but it hasn't stayed with me. Worth getting from the library but not paying 40dollars for in the store. I loved the historical nature of the book, reading about Parihaka inspired me to read more, but the second half wasn't as good.

  • Sara
    2019-06-19 01:42

    Like others on Goodreads I found the narrative structure, the blending of fact and fiction, hard to follow and it made me less enthused about continuing reading the book. Glad I finished it though and certainly learned a lot about Parihaka that I will likely retain as a result of reading this book.

  • Rawh Mcd
    2019-06-20 00:36

    I nearly gave up reading this book because the writing was so laboured but the subject compelled me to finish it. I normally love with ihimaera's novels but the structure of this one made it a difficult read. However, I will probably recall more of the details of what happened at Parihaka from reading this than from a history book.

  • Norah
    2019-06-07 06:01

    I got this book as a controlled release at the 2012 Bookcrossing Convention in Dublin last weekend, just before we were about to leave, as mahinaarangi wanted it to be released somewhere further north. I may read it before releasing...

  • Sushmita Narayana
    2019-06-04 05:50

    The story is simple - woman sets out on a journey to find and rescue her husband. What I did like was the description of the Maori struggle and the way the author connected scenes from history and his interpretations within the setting of the story.

  • Linda
    2019-06-21 00:58

    It the point of tossing this book out, I read some reviews saying the second half was better than the first. I found the style clunky and in voice of the narator irritating and intrusive.On the positive side, nz history, human brutality, personal strength.

  • Angela
    2019-06-24 02:58

    Thoroughly enjoyed this book and found the narrative style helpful in linking the present with the past. I live in Taranaki and found this book inspired me to read more about local and national history.