Epic Adventures Across Aotearoa - Reviewed by Kerry Lee  | Regional News Connecting Wellington

Epic Adventures Across Aotearoa

Written by: Ray Salisbury

Exisle Publishing

Reviewed by: Kerry Lee 

Starting with Graeme Dingle and Jill Tremain in 1971 as they attempted to traverse the Kā Tiritiri o te Moana, aka the Southern Alps, Epic Adventures Across Aotearoa takes readers on an adventure of a lifetime.

Each chapter is its only little story, where the new protagonist(s) dare to push themselves to the limit on adventures that will in some cases take your breath away. Despite all the obstacles, they found a way to keep pushing and overcame hurdles that some (myself included) would find insurmountable. For someone like me who is more of an ‘armchair adventurer’, this book inspired me to get out of my comfort zone and start exploring – although not quite to the extent of what is covered here!

Salisbury’s writing is fantastic and a real standout component of the book. I felt that I was there living each adventure alongside the heroes the author encapsulates. Illustrations and maps make them seem even more alive than they are and bring their journeys to life. Non-fiction writing can be boring, but not Salisbury’s. I was engaged on every page.

My favourite part was chapter four, where mountaineer Richard Ackerley set himself the goal of climbing to the top of Aoraki/Mount Cook before turning 20 – something he achieved. I also especially liked the summary at the end of each chapter as I got a little taste of what became of each adventurer afterwards.

There are no downsides that I can see to this book; it’s well written with great additional visual content that leaps off the page and sucks you in.

As previously mentioned, Epic Adventures Across Aotearoa gave me a little inspiration to see more of my country, and I hope it does the same for you. If you see this on a bookshelf and haven’t explored New Zealand but want to, I seriously encourage you to pick it up.

View more reviews:
« Click here