Saturday, 25 November 2006

Aunt Effie's Ark, Jack Lasenby, 2003

AUNT EFFIE’S ARK Jack Lasenby, Longacre Press, Dunedin, New Zealand, 2003, 173 pages, paperback, $16.95. ISBN 1-877135-84-4.

Aunt Effie’s Ark, the second in Jack Lasenby’s series about his indomitable aunt, follows on smoothly from Aunt Effie. As the ink-wells freeze and the snow builds up, Effie hibernates, leaving her 26 nieces and nephews to fight off the wolves, bears and man-eating rhinoceroses which sneak down from the Vast Untrodden Ureweras. When disaster strikes, their well-stocked barn serves as a fully-rigged ark, giving New Zealand’s best fabulist a chance to demonstrate his skill at spinning outrageous whoppers. This funny epic introduces the Underground Correspondence School and has guest appearances by Barry Crump, a talking horse and three of Effie’s former husbands. David Elliot’s pictures are gems.

Trevor Agnew

First published in The Press, Christchurch, New Zealand on March 6th 2004

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