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New Bilingual Edition Of Book Retells The Fact-based Story Of The Huia For Young Readers

First published in a hardback edition in 2016, Oratia Books has now released this beautifully illustrated story about the huia and its tragic extinction in a bilingual (English and Māori) paperback. Translated by Lois McIver with Kanapu Rangitauira, the rhyming text starts with 12 huia birds living in the forest as they always have — until one day a waka appears on the horizon.

Māori settlers bring their weapons, rats and dogs, and European settlers who follow centuries later add to the pressure on the poor huia. One by one they start to disappear — what will remain?

Through its gentle rhyme and colourful imagery, 12 Huia Birds / 12 Manu Huia shares an environmental message for young readers – and includes links to an app, educational resources and games.

The Listener named the previous edition as one of its best children’s books of 2016, and called it: “A striking reminder of the many ways this beautiful bird was wiped out.”


Julian Stokoe is a mixed media and animation director who has worked widely in TV and design. He is director of mobile media developer Yoozoo. Julian lives with his wife and family in Laingholm, Auckland. Stacy Eyles (Ngāti Porou) is an art director, artist, and award-winning illustrator based in Wellington. He produces work in many different media, ranging from canvas and murals to clothing and television.

12 Huia Birds / 12 Manu Huia by Julian Stokoe, illustrated by Stacy Eyles and published by Oratia Books.

ISBN: 978-0-947506-78-0 | RRP $22.99 | Paperback

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