Author(s): Andy Reisinger & Chris Winitana
It was a pristine world, green, natural, untainted. Aotearoa New Zealand was covered with gigantic trees and delicate ferns, a landscape teeming with wildlife, especially birds of impossible shapes and heavenly sounds. It was paradise. Then people came. And as the centuries passed, a little more of the land was despoiled, a few more species of wildlife disappeared forever. But the original Maori settlers remembered the land as it was and recorded its life in elaborate and splendid stories that became the legends of Aotearoa. Now, in this breathtaking book, Chris Winitana re-tells fourteen of the favourite stories of the Maori people, accompanied by over one hundred colour photographs by Andy Reisinger that show the paradise that was - and is - New Zealand. The book includes many of the best-known stories - the legends of Maui, Kupe, the Arawa canoe, Rona and the moon - and some less well known, such as the legend of the walking mountains, the fires of the earth, the flight of the greenstone people and the story of Wakatipu. The legends cover tribal areas from all around New Zealand, reflecting the breadth of the photography, from isolated Northland beaches to lofty alpine heights. Legends of Aotearoa is a truly magnificent book that will impress and enchant visitors and New Zealanders alike.