The Forgotten Coast, by Richard Shaw (Massey November 2021)

Neil's picture

This third book in Massey's charming small memoir series is as surprising and unique as the first two. Like the others, it's at heart a family story, with secrets to be revealed. Shaw, now a professor, grew up not knowing that his family's privileged position came from ancestors farming land in Taranaki that had been confiscated from mana whenua and sold to his great grandfather, who was a member of the Armed Constabulary at the invasion of Parihaka in 1881. Through comprehensive research, Shaw uncovers and unpicks this revelation, and intertwines it with other stories about his family's relationship with Catholicism. This is an urgent and vital book in todays decolonising nation.