October 19, 2018 posted by John Duke

AFTERGLOW: Prime Minister’s Awards for Literary Achievement

AFTERGLOW: Prime Minister’s Awards for Literary Achievement

Tuesday October 16, 2018

Each year New Zealanders are encouraged to nominate authors who they feel have made significant contributions to New Zealand’s literary scene. This year’s Prime Minister’s Awards for Literary Achievement went to Renée for fiction, Wystan Curnow for non-fiction, and Michael Harlow for poetry. Unity Books was honoured to host a lunchtime panel discussion led by Radio New Zealand’s Kathryn Ryan and extends the warmest congratulations.

Late arrivals found standing room only as Ryan warmed up the panelists, diving straight into some lively and lyrical banter before the writers read selected excerpts of their work. Eruptions of laughter, nods of the head and a few audible sighs from a totally engaged audience drove home why these three talented folks were singled out in their craft.

Another round of hearty congratulations and gracious thank-yous to the recipients, panelists and host. It was our pleasure to spend the afternoon celebrating your talents.


A cheerful crowd assembles.

Left to Right: Michael Harlow, Renée, Wystan Curnow and Kathryn Ryan

Renée explains how heroicism can be found in commonplace actions.

Wystan Curnow reads an excerpt from his book.

Michael Harlow speaks on the lyrical nature of dialogue and playwriting before reading one of his poems.

Renée reads a heartwrenching selection from one of her novels.

Kathryn Ryan wraps up a lively panel discussion, once again congratulating the writers on their much deserved awards.


Books by Renée, Wystan Curnow and Michael Harlow are available in store at Unity Books and online now.

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