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Milestone Rural Book released on internet

Milestone Rural Book Released on Internet

A fascinating look at a century of New Zealand farming development and life on the land has been published for the late Tom Butler, a prominent Central Hawke's Bay farmer and a noted national sheep dog trialist, by an innovative new publishing company.

Mr Butler died as Grandad's Room was being produced in May by Avlona Press, a Hastings-based publisher set up to assist prospective writers into print with a minimum of fuss and expense. Grandad's Room tells of the arrival of the Butler clan in New Zealand from 1875 onwards and their work opening up the rail link from Napier to Wellington, particularly on huge viaducts built from native woods to carry the permanent way across huge river ravines in Central Hawke's Bay.

"It's a fascinating account of life on the land up until the Second World War," said book editor, Paul Campbell.

"The foreword by the Rt Hon Sir Ian McKay, KNZM states: 'It's a vital part of our history, in which not only the descendants of the pioneers, but all out citizens can take pride.'

"Apart from 36 wonderful historic photographs, Grandad's Room is packed with insights and anecdotes about a life that has long passed us by, but here has been preserved for future generations

"It tells of the early opening up of the land, the road links to bring farms to the towns, the ballot block system and then the creation of 3,300 acres into Puro Puro, one of the finest sheep stations in the province.

"There's the arrival of the first family car, the advent of the party-line telephone and a new wonder, electricity, early travels in the North Island in the depression years, schooling and boarding life at Sacred Heart College in Auckland in the 20's, and a whole lot more.

"Tom's great love of working dogs and trialing is also evident.

"But it's a story made poignant by Tom's death as the book was being printed just short of his 90th birthday, and the tragic loss of his daughter, Josephine, just days later.

"Avlona Press has introduced 'print on demand' technology freeing prospective authors it accepts from having to invest heavily to bring their work to public notice. Too many writers in New Zealand are rejected unless they stump up many thousands of dollars in so-called 'shared costs' with publishing companies.

"Avlona Press offers advice and editing and also takes their work to the international marketplace on its website,"

Grandad's Room, a high quality A4 book printed by CHB Press, is available at $40 at the bookstore.

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