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3.6 of 5 stars 3.60  ·  rating details  ·  453 ratings  ·  35 reviews
It is a time of fear and confusion. Dramatic events threaten the marae. Potiki is Patricia Grace s best-selling novel about a coastal community in danger. It is a work of spellbinding power that weaves myths of older times into the political realities of today."
Unknown Binding
Published March 1st 1999 by Not Avail (first published 1986)
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Potiki is such an interesting book, it would make a great choice for book groups.

It is the story of a Maori community’s struggle to regain control of their ancestral lands. Having had their land acquired to build an airfield during WWI, these landholders were dispersed into rental accommodation so that it became almost impossible to sustain their culture and traditions. But as is so often the case in land rights matters, a dispirited and apparently ‘broken’ people were rejuvenated by a charismat...more
This is a book I've been meaning to read since it was an assigned reading for some of my friends in other English classes in high school. Once I started reading, I realised I had read the beginning before, though I don't remember when.

It is written beautifully, with poetry woven intricately throughout. It makes great use of New Zealand as a character, and the symbols, traditions and natural surroundings that can be found in our small country. Many people feel, and sometimes I am among them, tha...more
Speaking as a white American, I had a lot of difficulty following this book. In true Pacific Islander fashion, the author uses a lot of native terminology with the obvious attitude that "you either know it or you don't, and if you don't, you're not one of us, so we're not going to explain it". Grace also tells the story entirely from POV characters using their own language, so it's not always entirely clear what is happening - especially on the last 20 pages or so. For these reasons, I probably...more
i'm not sure how to describe this one for some reason, even though it should be simple enough. it's about a maori clan, mainly their struggles to hold onto their land and keep their traditions going, focussing particularly on one nuclear family. reading it was like listening to a storyteller, which i'm sure was intentional, since storytelling is an important part of the story. i liked it a lot.
Opens with a lyrical passage that inspired me to write. Distinctive voice and masterful plot weaving. Dialogue rings true-to-life, giving insight into relationships and the difficult--and beautiful--realities of Maori heritage.
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

This is a magical book. Toko-i-te-Marama has the gift of knowing and story telling. May he rule my heart.
Beautifully written - a novel whose heartache and hope stay with me long after I've closed the pages.
David Kealii
One of the best books about Polynesian struggles for community, culture and land.
A very interesting novel, but one that never quite came together for me.

The book is loosely structured, with different chapters told from the perspectives of different characters, and lots of switching between first and third person. The main plot concerns a conflict over land use between a Maori tribe and a group of developers who want to build a resort, but this plot actually takes up relatively little space in the book; Grace spends a lot of time on the backstories of her characters, and the...more
Patricia Grace is a beautiful writer, and can through reading her words i can paint a picture and the image in my head. There were times that I became lost since my knowledge of Maori vocabulary and customs are minimal.
Tatianna Capko
A very different book to me in terms of culture, doesn't mean it's bad, it was just unfamiliar to me. The plot was eventful and even maybe climactic. Pretty good.
Mark Hazell
This is a wonderful book, a work that gently brings the reader into the Maori world view -- beautiful and heartbreaking.
Annette Brown
Really enjoyed this little book.
I'm being forced to read this for school (Year 13). At first, I hated it. I disliked all the Maori words confusing me, all the Maori references I knew nothing about (I'm new to NZ) and it was just one huge complex mess. I still don't really like it, but now that we're discussing it in class, I see the depth and the meaning behind everything, and the parallels with Maori myths, and it isn't that bad.
I still gotta finish it though. I've been reading every other book in the world instead of this on...more
Reading the large print version of this book, along with the childlike, repetitive prose style put me off this book initially. But I am glad I finished it. It's interesting to think this book was written 25 years ago now = at times the themes seem a bit obvious - the dichotomy of good and evil too obvious - but 25 years ago this was a really important, and until then, untold story. And, on second thoughts, that's probably still the case now; the story needs to be told even if it seems old to tho...more
i'm not sure how to describe this one for some reason, even though it should be simple enough. it's about a maori clan, mainly their struggles to hold onto their land and keep their traditions going, focussing particularly on one nuclear family. reading it was like listening to a storyteller, which i'm sure was intentional, since storytelling is an important part of the story. i liked it a lot.
A good look into the lives of those native to New Zealand, and the clash when Europeans attempts to infiltrate and absorb. The tone is reminiscent of "The Pearl". However, at times it becomes difficult to read without having to pause and stare at a blank wall for a while before continuing; not in contemplation, but rather as a breather.
Tim Prasil
Patricia Grace's novel about the Māori, the folks who lived in New Zealand before the Europeans arrived. Neat novel about the efforts to turn sacred lands into a tourist attraction. Grace doesn't complicate the matter: it's a bad thing to do. But the characters are well-drawn, unexpected, and engaging.
I'm a huge fan of Patricia Grace, and have read this one more than once.
Because her books are so rooted in New Zealand, other readers might miss the intent of some cultural references but they'll be rewarded so richly by reading her. An exquisite writer not be missed!
This book was a struggle to get through because it uses a lot of the native Maori language but this aspect of the book fascinated me and made me want to read more.I would only recommend this book if you are willing to be patient and understand the Maori culture.
Rachael C
This was a very sad book, and also a confusing one, although I liked the ideas behind it. It brought me a perspective that I had never really acknowledged or known about before, provided a firsthand account of the conquering of a people.
Sep 19, 2012 Hannah rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People interested in Maori culture
Shelves: novels
I enjoyed reading this book mostly because I admire self-sufficiency. The Maori community displayed here lives completely secluded from the Pakeha society, following their own rules and traditions.
This book was pretty good. It started off poorly, but it ended well. I learned a little from this book.
Tungane Kani
Everything by Patricia is worth reading, she is a National treasure. Relevant real Maori stories with an edge
This is a beautiful book about a beautiful culture. I would heartily recommend it.
Scott Vilhauer
really enjoyed this depiction of Maori traditions in the modern world.
A great story on how culture is important to the land and it's people.
strange book. would not really recommend it to anyone i know.
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Patricia Grace is a major New Zealand novelist, short story writer and children’s writer, of Ngati Toa, Ngati Raukawa and Te Ati Awa descent, and is affiliated to Ngati Porou by marriage. Grace began writing early, while teaching and raising her family of seven children, and has since won many national and international awards, including the Kiriyama Pacific Rim Book Prize for fiction, the Deutz M...more
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