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A Savage Country is the final instalment in Paul Moon's trilogy of popular histories on the decades surrounding the signing of the Treaty, and follows his bestselling book on cannibalism in New Zealand, This Horrid Practice.

New Zealand in the 1820s had no government or bureaucratic presence; no newspapers were published; the literate population was probably no more than a couple of dozen people at any one time. Early explorers' assessments of New Zealand were haphazard at best - few knew what to make of this foreign land and its people.
In this groundbreaking history of early New Zealand, Paul Moon details how so many of the events in this decade - the introduction of aggressive capitalism, the arrival of literacy and the beginnings of Maori print culture, intertribal warfare, Hongi Hika and the British connection, colonisation as a simultaneously destructive and beneficial force - influenced the nation's evolution over the remainder of the century.
Moon leaves no stone unturned in his examination of this dynamic and fascinating pre-Treaty era. Surprising and engaging, A Savage Country does not merely recount events but takes us inside a changing country, giving a real sense of history as it happened.
 
'Paul Moon has produced an engrossing account of a singular, violent and confused decade in New Zealand's history.'
Paul Little, North & South

Reviews

'An excellent book, easy to read, intimately researched ... [and] extraordinarily well written. ... Moon has written a history for the rest of us, shedding essential light on a little-known decade that helped shape New Zealand.'

PRH, PRH

Matthew Wright, Sunday Star-Times

PRH, PRH

PRH, PRH

'Paul Moon has produced an engrossing account of a singular, violent and confused decade in New Zealand's history.'

PRH, PRH

Paul Little, North & South

PRH, PRH

PRH, PRH

'Moon's account is well documented and balanced ... a welcome addition to the revisionist unfolding of our national origins.'

PRH, PRH

Jeffrey Paparoa Holman, Dominion Post

PRH, PRH

'Moon does a great job of constructing a fluid and readable narrative about a defining period of the country's history.'

PRH, PRH

—Mana

PRH, PRH

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Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9780143567387

    April 26, 2012

    Penguin

    288 pages

    RRP $39.99

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