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New Holland New Zealand changes hands

New Holland Publishing Group Chief Executive Fiona Schultz announced today that the group has sold their New Zealand publishing business to Upstart Press Ltd, an Auckland-based independent publisher.

New Holland Publishers has been publishing in NZ for over 20 years and has a successful list of non-fiction titles, from cooking to natural history, travel to pictorial and has built a steady list of bestsellers and  backlist titles among them Alison Holst , Peter Janssen and many other incredible writers and stories told by local New Zealand authors.

Fiona Schultz commented “New Holland Publishers Group has always been proud of our New Zealand operation, which has contributed to many best sellers over the years and has built an incredible and solid backlist. I know Upstart Press is the perfect home for our business in New Zealand and our authors and titles are in safe hands with Kevin and his incredible team at Upstart Press”.

Upstart Press was formed in 2013 by former Hachette NZ Managing Director Kevin Chapman and others and has made a name by publishing high profile sports stars such as Richie McCaw, Dan Carter, and Brendon McCullum.   Upstart Press also has a successful children’s and fiction list.  In addition, Upstart operates a warehouse business which supplies distribution to most of the university presses in the country.

Kevin Chapman commented “I have looked at the New Holland list since my very first contact on returning to the country in 1998. It has always seemed a natural fit for the publishing lists I have been responsible for. So when Fiona agreed to discuss a sale with us I was very pleased, and to have concluded that process with a successful purchase is a great day for Upstart Press. We look forward to getting to know in greater detail the authors and books that are coming to us. Further details on a new imprint name as well as sales and distribution arrangements will be announced soon.”

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Draw Some Awesome Competition

** This competition is now closed.** Congratulations to our lucky winner Annabel T of Kelburn. Check out her cool entry below, which saw her transform an upside down plant into a spaceship! There were so many creative entries from the very clever kids of Aotearoa.

To celebrate the launch of Donovan Bixley’s new book Draw Some Awesome we want to see your awesome drawing.

You could win $100 worth of AWESOME Donovan Bixley books from Upstart Press.

How to Enter

Watch the video below to get some helpful tips from Donovan.

Look around your home for interesting shapes, like a hair dryer. Use your imagination to turn the shape into a fantastical drawing.

Everyday inspiration is all around you… you could turn a pot plant into a drawing of a fancy ball dress, or maybe one of your mum’s shoes would make a cool spaceship. Let your imagination fly.

When you’re done, send your entry through – we can’t wait to see it!

Want More Info?
Download this sheet here
You might also want to pick up a copy of Draw Some Awesome from your local bookstore or order online here

The Details
Entry is open to NZ residents aged 16 and under.
Email entries to by 11.59pm Friday 17 December.
Entries must include the entrant’s name, age, phone number and address.
There is one prize, consisting of $100 worth of Donovan Bixley books published by Upstart Press books. The winner can select the books they wish to receive, subject to stock availability. The books will be couriered to their New
Zealand street address.
The winner will be selected at random and announced on this page by Thursday 23 Dec.
By entering, you give permission for Upstart Press and/or Donovan Bixley to display your entry on their social media channels and websites.

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Book Launch: A Biker’s Tale

It takes a brave and perhaps foolhardy type of person to attempt cycling’s Tour Aotearoa. This epic biennial event sees participants ride the length of mainland New Zealand, following a set route which covers 3000 km of mountain-bike trails, connected by back-country roads.

Legendary New Zealand endurance athlete and coach John Hellemans took part in the 2018 edition of the Tour and shares the experience in ‘A Biker’s Tale’.

Join John to celebrate the launch of the book.

Date: Thursday 15 April
Time: 5.30pm
Location: University Bookshop Canterbury, University Drive, Ilam, Christchurch

All welcome, just RSVP to Free parking after 5pm on campus.

Can’t make the event but would like a signed copy? Order one here (free delivery):

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Author Tour: Tom Scott

Tom Scott has been all over the country, talking about Searching for Charlie. Here’s where you can see him next.

Saturday 15 May – AUCKLAND
Auckland Writers Festival
Session: Persons of Interest
Time: 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Location: Limelight Room, Aotea Centre
Details: Free event, no ticket required. More details here

We expect to add more events next year. Check back for updates or follow our Facebook page here.

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Colour and win!

** This competition is now closed. **

Congratulations to our winner, 8-year-old William Smith! We hope William enjoys reading is way through a big stack of Donovan Bixley books this summer.

To celebrate the release of Māui and the Secret of Fire / Māui me te Ahi a Mahuika we’ve got a Donovan Bixley book pack valued at $100 to giveaway. Just download the colouring sheet below and get creative.

Acclaimed author/ illustrator Donovan Bixley is back with the latest adventure in his Tales of Aotearoa series, which sees his fresh take on Māui bring the cheeky trickster to life for a new generation of Kiwi kids.

Māui and the Secret of Fire (Māui me te Ahi a Mahuika) follows the success of How Maui Slowed the Sun (Te Whakatautōnga A Māui I Te Rā), which was a finalist for the 2020 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults and How Māui Fished up the North Island, and the te reo Māori edition Te Hīnga Ake a Māui i Te Ika Whenua, which was nominated for the Wright Family Foundation Te Kura Pounamu Award for te reo Māori at the 2019 awards.

Bixley says he thoroughly enjoys exploring Māui’s world and, under the guidance of Dr Darryn Joseph and Keri Opai, is discovering deeper meaning and historic connections behind the legend of Māui.

The book is on sale now and available in both English and te reo Māori.

Terms and Conditions: Open to NZ residents only. Entrants must be aged 12 and under at the competition’s close. Entries must be received by 30 November, 2020. Send completed colouring sheets to PO Box 33319 Takapuna, Auckland, 0622 or email to One (1) winner will be selected by Upstart Press and will receive one (1) pack of Donovan Bixley books valued at $100 RRP. The winner will be contacted by 13 December, 2020 via the email address provided and will have one (1) week to claim their prize and confirm the delivery address, otherwise the competition will be redrawn.